This site was developed to provide you public information about inspections of food establishments in Grant County.
Why are Food Establishments inspected?
Food establishments are inspected to check for compliance with food safety rules to help ensure they are safe places to eat. The inspection reports are used as tools to measure compliance with the food safety rules, highlight areas to educate the operators, and guide corrective actions to help prevent foodborne illness.
Which Food Establishments are inspected?
All food establishments that sell or serve food to the public must be licensed and inspected. In Grant County, there are over 600 annually licensed retail food establishments, including restaurants, mobile food units (food trucks), espresso stands, grocery stores, convenient stores, delis, and school cafeterias.
How often are Food Establishments inspected?
Food establishments are inspected at least once per year; however, most are visited several times. Additionally, new food establishments are inspected at least once before opening.
Which inspections are posted online?
Inspections of annually licensed food establishments from 2014 and forward are posted on the GCHD website. Inspections prior to 2014 are available through Public Records Request.
What does an inspection of a Food Establishment consist of?
Food Safety Inspectors look at many things during inspections, however, the focus of the inspection is on the high risk factors—items that are most likely to make people sick if they are not done correctly—which are referred to as “red violations” in the inspection report. Examples of red violations are food workers not washing hands properly or handling ready-to-eat food with bare hands, and food temperature violations. “Blue violations” are the lower risk items such as cleaning and maintenance of the equipment and facilities.
Each violation the inspector observes is documented (“written up”) on the inspection report and assigned a pre-determined point value. The inspection “score” is the total of all violation points found during the inspection, therefore the lower the “score”, the better. A perfect inspection is zero points. The total of “red violation” points determines whether a food establishment “passes” (does not need a re-inspection) or “fails” (needs a re-inspection).
When and why do Food Establishments have to close?
Occasionally, food establishments are required to close due to repeated failing inspections, or if an imminent health threat is found to be occurring, such as loss of water supply or no hot water, loss of electricity, or if there is sewage backing up, a fire, or if the establishment is suspected to be the source of an ongoing foodborne illness outbreak.
What else do I need to know about Food Establishment Inspections?
It is important to understand that inspection reports are “snapshots” of food handling practices at the establishment during the time of inspection. Conditions may be different when you visit. The inspections follow food safety practices and sanitation rules of the Washington State Retail Food Code (WAC 246-215), and do not address such items as taste or popularity, or any details about the business ethics of a food establishment.
If you have any questions or concerns about Food Establishment inspections, please contact Grant County Health District at (509) 766-7960 ext. 0.