Food Safety

Community and Public Health no longer provides food safety services within Canterbury, South Canterbury and the West Coast.

A woman preparing a meal with her son and daughter.The Ministry for Primary Industries now deals with queries on any of the following:

  • Food Complaints including foreign objects or undeclared allergens in food within our region;
  • Food Recalls;
  • Imported Food;
  • Food Safety Programmes; and
  • Food Labelling

Community and Public Health still deals with food poisoning and food-borne illness.

Contact an Environmental Health Officer at your local council if you want to report a ‘dirty’ food premises or unhygienic practices of food handlers.

Food safety guidance for pregnant women

Your immunity levels are lower than usual when you are pregnant. So you’re more at risk of getting food poisoning or other diseases from food.

Eating safely when you are pregnant will help protect you and your developing baby’s health. Foodborne illness can make you and your baby unwell, and in extreme cases can cause:

  • serious illness;
  • premature birth;
  • stillbirth; or
  • the death of newborn babies.

Some foods have a higher risk of causing illness and should be avoided while you’re pregnant. Other foods need to be prepared carefully to reduce the growth of harmful bacteria.

It is also important to follow basic food safety guidelines when preparing and storing food. This helps prevent harmful bacteria from getting in your food.



Download or order resources from the Community Health Information Centre.


For further information, contact:

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI)
0800 693 721

Understanding the risks of raw milk

Raw milk has not been heat treated to kill harmful bacteria such as Campylobacter, Listeria and toxin-producing strains of E. coli.

There’s no way of telling by taste, sight or smell if raw milk will make you sick.

People most likely to get sick from drinking raw unpasteurised milk are young children, pregnant women and those with weakened immune systems.

Be food safe this summer

Sharing a delicious picnic or BBQ with family and friends is a much-anticipated part of summer holidays, but the warm weather does bring some risks to our meals over this time.

Page last updated: 02/03/2021

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