Public Consultation - Review of the Food Standards Australia New Zealand Act 1991 - Impact Analysis

Closed 10 Apr 2024

Opened 15 Feb 2024


In November 2019, the Australia and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation (Forum) endorsed an ambitious plan to reform the Bi-national Food Regulation System to ensure it remains strong, robust and agile into the future. A key element underpinning the reform agenda is the review of the Food Standards Australia New Zealand Act 1991 (FSANZ Act).

The FSANZ Act Review commenced in July 2020, and is a comprehensive examination of the effectiveness of the FSANZ Act and the associated operations and responsibilities of Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ). The FSANZ Act is Australian legislation and underpins the Australia New Zealand Joint Food Regulatory System within which New Zealand participates as a partner under the bilateral Food Treaty.

Extensive stakeholder consultation has been undertaken to date, including public consultation on a Scoping Paper across October and November 2020, draft Regulatory Impact Statement in April to May 2021, and targeted workshops with key government, industry, public health and consumer bodies in 2021 and 2023.

Current engagement

Through this work, the FSANZ Act Review has identified 27 concepts across four themes for further investigation. These concepts have been consolidated into 20 components in the Impact Analysis due to alignment of several concepts and for easier analysis.

The Impact Analysis outlines the cumulative costs and benefits of these components. Each of the 20 components are being considered individually, and it is expected that the final proposal considered by Food Ministers will be a combination of different components within the four themes. The overall cost benefit will depend on components considered.

The Impact Analysis poses two options for consideration:

  • Option 1: Retain the status quo
  • Option 2: Modernise regulatory settings

Option 2 is comprised of four themes:

  • Theme 1 – Purpose and Objectives: Providing greater clarity on the purpose and objectives of FSANZ.
  • Theme 2 – Reforming Standard settings: Supporting more efficient and effective processes to develop food regulatory measures, with risk being the key driver of process.
  • Theme 3 – Efficient and Effective Operations: Focused on better use of FSANZ’s limited resources through more effective governance, as well as achieving financial sustainability for the organisation.
  • Theme 4 – Improving System Agility: Aimed at making the food regulatory system better integrated, streamlined, and evidence informed.

Stakeholders are being asked for their views on the Impact Analysis and to provide feedback to characterise the impact of the proposed concepts.

It should be noted that the options are presented without prejudice and do not represent agreed positions of any government in Australia and New Zealand. The data, commentary and information received through this consultation will be analysed to inform a final Impact Analysis, which will be used to inform any amendments to the FSANZ Act.

Why your views matter

The Australian and New Zealand joint food regulation system is a strong system, based on scientific evidence and expertise, that protects the health and safety of consumers. It is a complex system that involves all levels of the Australian and New Zealand governments.

The FSANZ Act Review is focused on the underpinning legislation of FSANZ and the subsequent functions and operations of FSANZ. Broader issues within the food environment, food regulation systems or government food policy are not within scope of the review.

Stakeholder submissions to this consultation will be used by the Department of Health and Aged Care to inform the final Impact Analysis.

The final report from the FSANZ Act Review will be provided to the Australian Government Minister responsible for FSANZ, who will consider the report/review in partnership with the New Zealand Minister for Food Safety and state and territory food ministers through the Australia and New Zealand Food Ministers’ Meeting.

Responding to the consultation

  • Download and read the Public Consultation Impact Analysis (available under the ‘Related’ section at the bottom of this page).
  • Respond to the questions in the online survey – the questions in the survey match the questions in the Public Consultation Impact Analysis. A preview of the survey is available for download under the ‘Related’ section at the bottom of this page.
  • Please provide evidence or examples to support your comments where possible.
  • It is not necessary to provide a response to all questions. There are 20 components being considered as part of this consultation and each concept has multiple questions. Please answer the questions that are relevant to your areas of interest or concern.
  • All submissions are subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 in Australia and the Official Information Act 1982 in New Zealand. If you consider that all or part of your submission should not be released, please make this clear when making your submission and indicate the grounds for withholding the information. 

What happens next

On completion of the public consultation period, the submissions will be analysed to inform an updated Impact Analysis and a draft model of reform with preferred policy options will be prepared. It is expected these documents will be presented to Food Ministers in Mid‑2024 for agreement to proceed to finalising the model of reform and drafting legislative changes.

A high-level report on the feedback on this submission will be provided to all participants once analysis has been undertaken and the updated Impact Analysis drafted.


  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People
  • Academics
  • Non-government organisations
  • State government agencies
  • Commonwealth agencies
  • Local governments
  • General public
  • Community groups
  • Businesses


  • Legislation
  • Regulatory policy
  • Chronic disease
  • Food standards
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health
  • Preventative health
  • Strategic Policy
  • Policy Development