I saw an important update on the Restaurant Association (NZ) website today pertaining to how small food outlets, like takeaways, can operate under the new traffic light system. It effectively allows such businesses greater freedoms to operate, so could save many from financial stress, or closure.

This week we have been pressing and questioning for further explanation around the requirements for those businesses that intended to operate under the traffic light framework without requiring customers to present a My Vaccine Pass (ie contactless takeaway only). As you will be aware, earlier this week we were informed that employees would still need to be vaccinated even if you intended to operate contactless takeaways.

As a result of our pressure, tonight we have received advice from DPMC, MOH, and MBIE that they have had a further look at our request and if you intend to operate for takeaways only, your business will operate under the retail rules, as the public health risk profile is similar.

This has 2 very important implications for takeaway businesses:

if you are solely takeaway, staff do not fall under the vaccine mandate

if you opt to not ask for vaccine passes, you can operate as takeaway, rather than contactlessly (AL3 style). You won’t be able to provide seating, but customers will be able to come inside for ordering and pick up.

A quick summary is here. The other key rules for retail are mandatory mask wearing and 1 metre physical distancing. Please note that businesses with both on-site dining and takeaway services will need to comply with the food and beverage rules – the changes above will not apply. 

We know that for some of you this will be a huge relief, for some it is the difference between being able to operate or not. We have been fighting for you and consider this a big win for the Association and for those of you in our industry who this change will affect.

Operating guidelines will be updated shortly.


Good News for Small Food Outlets
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