Local councils to fine unlicensed online sale of hāngī

By Taroi Black

Local councils are advising hāngī sellers to get a licence if they want to sell food under food and safety regulations.

But this is creating a bit of a stir online as many say this is not the way forward for cooking traditional food.

A new nationwide change to the food act comes into effect in 2016 and so regulations around how food is cooked and sold are going to be different.

Naomi Herewini says, “I don't agree because we could see ourselves losing out in the end. This is a tradition and every region has a different way of cooking.”

Hāngī being sold on Facebook has led to many complaints about people selling their homemade hāngī without a license.

Herewini says, “If this is what they want, then this is a problem.”

The Auckland Council have been working with marae or personal food operators who wish to sell food from hāngī and take them through all food safety and licensing requirements.

This also applies to food sellers needing a fire permit to organise their food operations.

Piki Thomas from the New Zealand Fire Service says, “There's a rule for all regions if they want to cook and sell hāngī. Just ask your local council whether they agree to cook the hāngī.”

Local councils will soon start fining the unlicensed online sale of hāngī. This doesn't including one-off fundraisers.