Food Business Overview


Food service businesses in Washington County must be licensed by the Environmental Health Program.  Licensed food service facilities include operations that provide food to the public for immediate consumption.  The Environmental Health Program licenses facilities such as restaurants, temporary food booths, mobile food units, commissaries, warehouses, and vending machines.

In 2014, Washington County's Environmental Health Program conducted 2510 routine restaurant inspections, 204 routine mobile food unit inspections, 502 temporary food operation inspections, 456 reinspections in facilities where serious food safety violations were found, and investigated consumer complaints including 86 complaints of suspected foodborne illness.

Annual licenses expire on December 31 of every calendar year and are not transferable from one person to another. 

Restaurant Inspection Scores are public record.  A restaurant must receive a score of 70 to pass the inspection.  Consumers can find a placard on the restaurant entrance that indicates if a restaurant passed the most recent health inspection. 

Note: New Food Service Rules were adopted September 4, 2012.  For more information about the changes, visit the Food Code Adoption page.