As you would know, the Victorian Government recently announced the coronavirus roadmap to recovery which highlights when businesses can re-open and to what capacity.
To help you to easily understand how the road map impacts you, some commonly asked questions have been answered below.
What am I currently allowed to do?
Under current restriction levels, restaurants and hospitality are permitted to provide take away and delivery services only. You will not be permitted to provide 'dine-in' services until the Third Step of the roadmap.
What measures should I currently have in place?
You should currently have the following measures in place when operating your business:
- staff can only attend work if permitted. Staff in permitted work premises must work from home if they can.
- apply density quotient
- reduce staff levels
- limit number of patrons
- no carpooling to work
Wear a mask:
- ensure the proper use of masks in the workplace
- for some sectors, additional PPE requirements
- ensure adequate PPE training and supply
Practise good hygiene:
- auditing of cleaning schedules
Keep records and act quickly if staff become unwell:
- ask staff to declare in writing or electronically before each shift that are free of symptoms, have not been in contact with a confirmed case and have not been directed to isolate
Create workforce bubbles:
- ensure that staff members are not working across other work sites (exceptions apply)
When can I start providing dine-in services?
Under current restrictions, you are not permitted to provide any dine-in services. Food Businesses will be permitted to provide some dine-in services during the Third Step of Victoria's roadmap to reopening. This is proposed to be on 26 October 2020; however will be predominately outdoors and density quotas will apply.
We will be in contact with you again closer to this stage with more detailed information, as the Victorian Government has indicated these dates are subject to change.
Do I need a COVIDSafe Plan?
According to the Victorian Government Roadmap, all operating Victorian businesses must have a COVIDSafe Plan. Information on how to write a COVIDSafe Plan can be found at the following website: Business Victoria Coronavirus Business Information
Where can I get further information?
Further information about the road map and industry restriction levels is available at the following website: Industry Restriction Levels: Metro Melbourne
We hope this information has been helpful, if you would like further advice, please contact Business Victoria on 13 22 15, or visit the above links.
General information on how you can minimise the chances of transmission throughout Victoria of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) whilst operating your business.
During this time it is extremely important that you continue to take extra precautions and follow advice given by the government to protect your food premises and the health of your customers.
Current restrictions limit your premises to providing take away and delivery services only; after 8PM, you will only be permitted to provide delivery as curfew times prevent customers from leaving their homes after 8PM.
Please be reminded that all staff must be wearing a face mask while working unless they have a medical reason not to.
How is COVID-19 spread?
Human coronaviruses are spread when someone infected with the COVID-19 virus comes into close contact with another person and exposes them to the virus through contaminated droplets. These droplets can be spread by coughing and sneezing or by contact with contaminated hands, surfaces or objects.
How can you help prevent spread within your food business?
Although COVID-19 is not considered to be a food-borne illness, it can still be spread within your food premises if effective cleaning and hygiene measures are not implemented and maintained. To assisting in minimising the risk, ensure the following:
Regularly clean your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, or an alcohol-based hand rub. Be mindful to wash your hands after handling money or between customers.
Cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with tissue or into your flexed elbow
Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms. Do not work if you are sick.
Practice cough etiquette (keep away from other people, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and clean your hands.)
Continue practice good cleaning and sanitising processes within your food premises which includes all food preparation surfaces, equipment, dining areas, utensils and crockery.
Introduce more frequent cleaning of shared surfaces. This may include door handles (entry/exit door, fridge/freezers, toilets/bathrooms), tables and chairs (arm rests or handles) salt and pepper shakers, sugar bowls, communal cutlery containers and EFTPOS keypads.
Additional information and posters on how to correctly wash your hands is available here; Keep Hands Clean and Food Safe
Cleaning and Disinfecting
Whilst it may be difficult sourcing cleaning supplies during this time please note that plain/unscented chlorine-based (sodium hypochlorite) household bleach can also be used as a disinfecting agent. The following link will assist you in understanding how to correctly clean and disinfect your premises and the appropriate dilutions for using bleach:
What if I change my business model?
If you intend to change your business model to offer additional or varying food products, for example frozen or packaged meals and delivery services, there are additional requirements regarding labelling and transportation that you must consider. Additional information regarding the requirements is available below:
You are still able to provide takeaway and delivery services, however you are strongly encouraged to implement the following:
For takeaway: Take orders over the phone and call customers when their order is ready for pick-up. This will assist in social distancing and minimise the likelihood of large numbers of customers waiting inside or outside your premises.
For delivery: Leave orders at the front door, minimise the need to come into physical contact with your customers.
For payment: Minimise the exchange of cash, you are encouraged to use EFTPOS to accept payments to minimise physical contact with customers.
Where can I find more information