Five out of eight licensed premises checked by police in a "host responsibility" operation in Whangarei last night could be sanctioned due to non-compliance.

Breaches included having security staff that were not certified, allowing intoxicated people and failure to provide sufficient food, police said in a statement.

"We find that most people are surprised to hear that licensed premises are required to provide at least three substantial types of food at any time that they are selling alcohol. The food should be actively promoted and of reasonable quality, at a reasonable price and within a reasonable time.

"Licensed premises have a responsibility to provide a safe environment for patrons and staff. Allowing people to become intoxicated has a huge ripple effect on family violence, assaults, road crashes and victimisation."


Five premises had issues that could result in suspended licences or managers certificates.

In one premises, police saw a man stripping in the middle of the dance floor in full view of bar staff and patrons. They intervened just before his underwear came off.

"When an assessment was conducted he was barely able to stand and was ranked as extremely intoxicated. Police had to make arrangements for him to get home safely fearing that he could become a victim of crime had he been left alone.

"Breaches such as these can be a costly mistake for premises but should serve as an incentive to get things right in the future."