Seafood Processor Licence - Victoria

Service summary

You will require this licence if you intend to run a business that processes seafood for human consumption. There are two categories of licences:

  • seafood processor
  • seafood further processor.

Both licences authorise a business to sell seafood it has processed by wholesale or retail. A seafood processor is authorised to undertake the following processing activities:

  • fillet
  • shuck
  • head
  • gut
  • skin
  • pack
  • chill or freeze
  • store.

A seafood further processor is authorised to undertake the following processing activities:

  • canning
  • cooking
  • drying
  • smoking
  • curing
  • adding processing ingredients.

Separate licensing requirements are in place for fishing, harvesting and handling of seafood, and for general food business retailers who may sell cooked fish (e.g. takeaway shops, cafes, etc).

If you conduct, or intend to conduct, a seafood business in relation to the sale of live yabbies, you may apply for an exemption from licensing. To apply for this exemption, you must:

  • sell live yabbies from the location of your business or place of production
  • not use a vehicle in the sale of live yabbies
  • hold the appropriate fisheries permit.

Service type


A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for this licence you must:

  • put in place a quality assurance program (food safety plan) including the following components: Organisational Chart, Cleaning Program, Maintenance Program, Pest Control Program, Training Program, Calibration Program, Traceability Program, Recall Program, Management Review, Internal Review, and Process control program identifying process control in place to ensure wholesome seafood and seafood products are produced
  • provide PrimeSafe with a copy of the contract, or written advice from the approved Accredited Certification Body, confirming that you have engaged the approved body to enable an audit of the Quality Assurance program
  • ensure that the facility complies with the construction requirements of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.

All vehicles used for the conveyance and transportation of seafood for human consumption are required to be licensed (except for the transportation of live seafood which must be covered under the food safety plan of the licensed seafood business).

Full exemptions may apply to operators who are currently registered as a valid food business under dairy, meat industry or food legislation and who have a seafood quality assurance or food safety program in place.

Please consult the responsible agency for more information regarding eligibility requirements.

Ongoing requirements

You must abide by current industry codes of practice and any conditions placed on the operation of the licence such as compliance with a food safety program. The agency must be advised in writing if any of the following changes are made to a business:

  • the licensed operator of the facility changes, or the facility ceases to operate or changes ownership
  • an administrator, receiver or liquidator is appointed.




Licences expire on 31 December each year.



Fees will vary depending on the amount and type of seafood being processed. Please consult the responsible agency for more information.



Lodge your application and accompanying documentation directly with the Agency. Following receipt of your application, a PrimeSafe licensing manager will contact you to make arrangements to inspect the facility.

Approval time

Allow 10 days for your application to be processed.

Administering agency


Act(s) name

Seafood Safety Act 2003 (Victoria)

Contact details


Operating address:
150 Albert Road
South Melbourne, Victoria 3205
Mailing address:
PO BOX 2057
South Melbourne, Victoria 3205


03 9685 7333


03 9696 5284

Website: Opens in a new browser window

Supporting information


The information contained on the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) web site, or via packages or other sources is intended for general guidance only.

To the full extent permitted by law, the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments make no representations or warranties (expressed or implied) in relation to the information, including its accuracy, currency or completeness.

The business information provided does not constitute professional or legal advice, nor is the use of any third party resource an endorsement of the information contained, the associated organisation, product or service. It is recommended that you obtain appropriate professional and /or independent legal advice to ensure that the material provided here is relevant to your particular circumstances.

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