North Central Health District


Food Service Program

Food Service

Ensuring Your Meals are Safe to Eat

The goal of the food service program is to reduce the risk of food-borne illness associated with the improper storage, preparation and cooking of food. The EH Section permits facilities and conducts food service inspections at a minimum of twice per year. The EH Section also provides education, investigates complaints, and assists the Epidemiology Section with Food-borne Illness Investigations. Environmental Health Specialists operate under the auspices of the Georgia Rules and Regulations governing Food Service, Chapter 290-5-14. All restaurant inspection scores must be made available to the public and can be found on the DPH Health Inspection page.

Information for Owners/Operators

All restaurants, food trucks, caterers, bars and temporary food services are required to have a food service permit issued by the local health department. Non-profit organizations must also acquire a permit for any event where food is served.

Do you plan to open a restaurant, bar or other business that sells food? Following the steps below will help speed up the process. Remember to allow enough time to complete everything before you open the business.

  • Contact the local health department’s Environmental Health Office.
  • Complete the application they provide and pay any fees required
  • Provide a set of construction plans if you are building or remodeling; provide the entire set of plans, not just the layout of equipment.
  • Have a complete list of the equipment that you are purchasing. Only commercial ANSI Approved equipment is allowed. No home-style equipment is permitted. Make sure to submit this list before purchasing equipment – we will verify that equipment is allowed.
  • Become familiar with the Georgia Rules and Regulations for food service.
  • Contact all county agencies that may be involved in the opening of your business.

ServSafe® Manager Training

Are you responsible for preventing food-borne illnesses and upholding requirements of the FDA Food Code? Through the ServSafe® Manager Training course, you can improve your food safety and sanitation skills through our nationally recognized course. Learn more on our ServSafe Manager Training page.

Contact Your Local Environmental Health Office

Call your nearest health department to ask with any questions or concerns!


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