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Food processing

Develop a COVID-19 Safety Plan to help get your food processing and manufacturing business, including abattoirs, back to work.


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Having a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place will help to protect your staff and customers.

You can either:

Updating your plan

You may need to update the plan in the future, as restrictions and advice changes - you can make changes to the plan if you've printed or saved it, or you can choose to download and create a new version of the plan. If you have registered as a COVID Safe business, you don't need to re-register.

Suggested checklist for your COVID-19 Safety Plan

  • Exclude staff and visitors who are unwell from the workplace. 
  • Provide staff with information and training on COVID-19, including when to get tested, physical distancing and cleaning.
  • Make staff aware of their leave entitlements if they are sick or required to self-isolate.
  • Display conditions of entry (website, social media, site entry).

  • Where reasonably practical, ensure staff always maintain 1.5 metres physical distancing (including at meal breaks). Consider placing markers on the floor to assist with adequate distancing.
  • Calculate the floor area in meeting rooms to determine the maximum capacity who can safely occupy this space (one person per 4 square metres). Use signs at entrances to communicate the maximum safe capacity.
  • Move or remove seating and tables as required to comply with physical distancing
  • Use telephone or video platforms for essential meetings where practical.
  • Where reasonably practical, stagger start times and breaks for staff members to minimise the risk of close contact.
  • Consider physical barriers such as plexiglass around counters with high volume interactions with visitors.
  • Review regular deliveries and request contactless delivery and invoicing where practical.
  • Manage delivery times to minimise the number of vehicles and people in loading dock areas. Designate a space where they can carry out their duties at a safe distance. 
  • Have strategies in place to manage gatherings that may occur immediately outside the premises.
  • Consider strategies for staff to be encouraged to take meal breaks outside, where practical in sufficiently shaded areas, or warm sheltered areas.

  • Adopt good hand hygiene practices.
  • Ensure bathrooms are well stocked with hand soap and paper towels.
  • Have hand washing facilities or hand sanitiser at key points around the site, such as entry and exit points and meal areas. Hand sanatiser may not work well if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Clean areas frequented by staff at least daily with detergent or disinfectant. Clean frequently touched areas and surfaces several times per day with a detergent or disinfectant solution or wipe.
  • Disinfectant solutions need to be maintained at an appropriate strength and used in accordance with the manufacturers’ instructions.
  • Staff are to wear gloves when cleaning and wash hands thoroughly before and after with soap and water.
  • Where reasonably practical, consider methods to avoid the shared use of items, such as pens and pencils, tools or workstations.
  • If shared machinery is used, ensure there are processes in place to clean with a detergent solution or disinfectant wipes between use. 
  • If sharing tools and equipment is unavoidable, ensure they are cleaned with a detergent solution or disinfectant wipes in between use.
  • Place visual aids about physical distancing, hygiene and hand washing practices around the workplace.

  • Keep a record of name and a mobile number or email address for all staff, visitors and contractors for a period of at least 28 days. Ensure records are used only for the purposes of tracing COVID-19 infections and are stored confidentially and securely.

  • Employers should make staff aware of the COVIDSafe app and the benefits of the app to support contact tracing if required. 

  • Cooperate with NSW Health if contacted in relation to a positive case of COVID-19 at your workplace, and notify SafeWork NSW on 13 10 50.

Become a COVID Safe business


Step 1

Download your COVID-19 Safety plan

Download, print and complete a COVID-19 Safety Plan: food processing (PDF, 193 KB) for your business.

Step 2

Register as a COVID Safe business 

If you've completed and downloaded your COVID-19 Safety Plan, you can register your business as COVID Safe.

Register a COVID Safe business



Last updated: 16 June 2020.

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