OH&S Food Sampling Obligations Onsite

OH&S Food Sampling Obligations Onsite

** NOTE for 2024 Restrictions around Hand Washing and the Safe Handling of Food will be enforced more strictly, please read the below information carefully and ensure you have the appropriate protocols and processes in place. **

This information applies to both alcoholic and no alcoholic sampling exhibitors and is designed to ensure you take appropriate measure to keep a safe and clean work space at the show. If you are unsure about the requirements for your business, please contact Mary Whelan on 0408 039 964, Food Service Advisor or email [email protected]

You will need to log in to the compulsory forms under sampling to complete and supply this information:

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Safe Handling during Covid-19

Below are some considerations in regards to Safe Handling of Food at the event in light of Covid-19:

1) For all “exposed” food or where touching of food occurs (particularly high risk food), it is now also mandatory to have:

  • Bench Sanitizer
  • Separate Hand Sanitizer on the stand for staff and public

The City of Sydney has a handy Temporary Food Stall Checklist to ensure you are well prepared for the event.

2) Exhibitors must have adequate processes and structures in place to show that they are protecting the food from the public; this includes: 

  • Installing a Sneeze Guard or using food covers
  • Where unpackaged food is to be given away it should be done in a manner that avoids handling by the public.
    • Designate a staff member to hand out samples directly (through tongs, gloves, etc) to the consumer and not leave out on bench free to take.
    • Condiments should be contained in squeeze dispensers or individual packs. Only leave a small number out to take.
    • Cups and utensils should be disposable.

Hand Washing Requirements

Depending on the relative risk of the food you have and the preparation methods, the below serves as a general guide to your requirements for what level of hand washing and hygiene is required on the stand:


A High-risk food is anything that is considered to be potentially hazardous food and requires temperature control. This includes but is not limited to:

  • raw or cooked meat, poultry, small goods,
  • dairy products, yoghurts, milks,
  • seafood (excluding live seafood),
  • processed fruit and vegetables (e.g. fruit that will be juiced onsite),
  • cooked pasta and rice (e.g. sushi),
  • food containing eggs (that are not cooked- e.g. making mayonnaise),
  • food containing beans, nuts or other protein rich food,
  • prepared sandwiches, rolls, salads and pizza.

For high risk products you must have hand washing facilities on the stand. For full preparation of foods – such as cutting, chopping, mixing then cooking; for hand washing you must have a separate plumbed in hand wash unit with an adequate supply of warm running water (approximately 40°C), liquid soap and disposable paper towels. This must be separate to your plumbed in double bowl sink for washing equipment.

Below is an example of a combination double walled sink and wash unit – refer to the Plumbing Page, this can be hired through the Event Plumber.

** For high risk foods that will be heated only on the stand (such as using a microwave oven, a frypan where all ingredients have been prepared off site) – a powered portable hand wash unit should be installed on the stand.

(Note – The washing of utensils must then be undertaken in the Designated Wash Areas (see below) where there will be a double bowl sink for washing then rinsing the dishes.)

Below is an example of a powered portable hand wash unit – refer to the Plumbing Page, this can be hired through the Event Plumber.


You are low risk if your products are not handled and involve minimal preparation. This includes but is not limited to:

  • dry goods, pickles, salad dressings, bottled marinades, bottled sauces (tomato/ketchup), Asian and soy, pasta sauces
  • nuts in the shell, salted/fermented dried meats
  • honey and jam, peanut butter
  • fruit/plain cakes, biscuits and crackers
  • hard cheeses, processed bottled fruit juices,
  • unopened canned foods, bottled salsas,
  • raw whole fruit and vegetables,
  • dried fruit plain bread and bread rolls,
  • fully packaged yoghurts and confectionery,

Hand washing is still required on the stand but the system can be a portable one.

NOTE: Low risk exhibitors are responsible for organising their hand washing equipment below themselves. You will need: 

  • A portable unit – container, drum or urn (e.g. 10 litre drinking water container) with a tap on the end
  • a plastic bucket for waste water
  • liquid soap and paper toweling

This is the system whereby the water is tipped out and replaced systematically throughout the show. As exhibitors must wash their hands with warm running water (approximately 40°C), exhibitors should fill up on HOT water from the Designated Wash Areas in their portable unit and bring it back to the stand.

Alternatively, a maximum of 2 stalls may share a hand wash (station) basin as long as it is located within 5 metres of each stall and it is not obstructed.

If the product is PACKAGED – and will NOT BE OPENED at all, then no hand washing at stand is required however hand sanitizer is still recommended.

Inspections and Fees

Health officers may visit and carry out inspections of temporary food premises throughout the Show. If a City of Sydney Health Officer visits and inspects your stand at the show for food safety, the below fee is payable and an invoice will be issued to you on the spot. The fee will cover you for a 12 month period, even if you are inspected again at another event.

There are two fee categories for temporary food premises:

High-Risk Stand $235
Low-Risk Stand $170


Designated Wash Areas

The organisers will provide marked, dedicated wash areas for you to rinse out and clean your equipment (such as washing of tongs, platters, small pots from induction cooker, frypans, etc) for those exhibitors that do not have their own plumbed in sink.

Please refer to the floorplan for your nearest wash station for those exhibitors that do not have their own plumbed in sink


Please note: 

  • The organisers will provide liquid soap, detergent, scourer, sponges and paper towelling. These will be replaced each day but we encourage all exhibitors to bring their own sponges, scourers and other cleaning equipment if they can.
  • There will be food grade bench sanitiser provided at the stations.
  • ALL EXHIBITORS must sanitize their hands before and after going to the wash area. There will be hand sanitizing stations located near the wash areas.
  • There will be a limited number of people at the stations at one time and all exhibitors will need to adhere to the social distancing rules in these areas. There will be signage onsite depending on the restrictions at the time. If the wash area is full, please wait before accessing or attend an alternate wash area.