Foodborne diseases are a major cause of illnesses throughout the world. There are approximately 76 million foodborne illnesses each year in the United States. In California, food safety is regulated by the local (county) environmental health departments.
Food safety regulations are promulgated in Division 104, Part 7 of the California Health & Safety Code, also known as the California Retail Food Code (CalCode).
In Inyo County, all food facilities are inspected regularly. In addition to routine, scheduled inspections, investigative inspections are conducted in response to complaints or suspected foodborne illnesses. Followup inspections are conducted when corrective actions were deemed necessary during a routine or investigative inspection. Routine food inspections include restaurants, markets, bakeries, bars, bed & breakfasts, food service vehicles and carts, and food service operations at fairs, festivals and other special events.
The California Food Handler Card law is designed to ensure that restaurant employees receive a reasonable level of training in food safety practices to reduce the potential for foodborne illness. Food handlers must have a California Food Handler Card 30 days from the date of hire. Employees can get the card online with a short class and test. By law, the test cannot cost more than $15.00 and is good for three years.
Each food facility must maintain records documenting that each employee possesses a valid California Food Handler Card that can be provided to local enforcement officials upon request.
The document below contains California food handler frequently asked questions, and the link is to the California Restaurant Association's page on the topic.
Whether you want to open a brick and mortar restaurant, keep it mobile with a hotdog cart, or sell food at a community event, the documents below can get you started.