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With the increase in online shopping and consumer preferences for convenience, you can open an online bakery. Before you begin baking and investing in commercial ovens, remember to consider your legal obligations. You must understand consumer rights, privacy laws, and general governance documents. This article will outline the key legal documents for your online bakery.
Food Licensing Requirements
When running an online bakery, you should operate your business under NZ food and safety standards. To become a licensed food business, you must do the following:
- identify which food plan or programme you need;
- create your food operation location;
- have your business verified; and
- register your business.
Often, a high-risk business, such as a bakery, will need written procedures in a food control plan on how your business prepares and handles its food. A food control plan can also outline:
- the type of food you are producing;
- where you are making your food;
- how you prepare and source your food;
- risks involved;
- how to mitigate risks;
- who is responsible for the process; and
- your plan in case something goes wrong.
You can also utilise a food control template from the MPI. Ensure you tailor the template to your business needs. After finalising your food control plan, you can verify and register your business through your local council or MPI.
Website Terms and Conditions
You can draft a website’s terms and conditions to regulate how your website operates. Following this, you can display this legal document on your website through a clickwrap agreement. Customers must accept your terms and conditions before continuing to your bakery’s website.
Your terms and conditions can include:
- acceptance of terms;
- refunds and replacements;
- limitation of your liability;
- intellectual property ownership; and
- dispute resolution.
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- types of personal information you collect;
- why and how you collect the information;
- how you will store and protect the information;
- how customers can contact you regarding their data;
- who you share information with;
- whether customers can opt out of providing their personal information; and
- your process in case of a privacy breach.
- acceptable behaviour;
- prohibited conduct;
- limitation of your liability;
- disclaimers and warranties; and
- intellectual property.
For example, if you allow client testimonials and reviews to be posted on your website, you can clarify what is appropriate to post and what is not.
Terms of Sale
To govern the sales of your online bakery, it is best to draft a term of sales document. This document can include the following:
- payment methods;
- subscription options;
- your returns, refund and exchange policy;
- delivery prices based on locations and extra costs;
- whether you offer an in-person collection; and
- types of products you provide.
Ensure that your terms of sale document complies with consumer laws. For example, if your products are faulty or wrong, you may need to provide a remedy under consumer guarantees. This may include a refund, return or exchange, depending on the situation.
Additionally, you have fair trading duties to comply with, meaning your products must be safe, and all product descriptions must be accurate and honest. Further, you cannot make unsubstantiated claims about your baked goods. For example, you can only state that your bread is made from organic flour if you have evidence.
This guide will help you learn how to launch your new online business.
If you need help drafting legal documents for your online bakery, contact our experienced e-commerce lawyers as part of our LegalVision membership. For a low monthly fee, you will have unlimited access to lawyers to answer your questions and draft and review your documents. Call us today on 0800 005 570 or visit our membership page.
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