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Food Service Establishment Forms and Applications

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Before an operator can prepare and sell food in NC, a Permit for retail food service most likely will be required. Permits are issued by Environmental Health after a thorough review of menus, plans, and equipment considerations.  If you are in doubt whether the food service you are planning needs a Permit, please contact us.

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Do you want to start a NEW business that prepares and sells food in Orange County?  
Complete this application and submit it to EH with the $250 plan review fee prior to beginning any construction, installation, or site preparation.  A remodel refers only to existing establishments wishing to renovate equipment (see below).  All others will be NEW permits.

Ready to open that new food service establishment? Once construction, installation, and site preparation are almost finished, complete this application and consult the check list for requirements 30 days prior to openingOpening means clean, cold refrigeration, hot water, thermometers in place, equipment fully installed, ready to serve food, etc. 

Remodeling an exhibiting establishment?  Remodeling may be defined as a change of menu concept, equipment changes, layout/flow changes, etc.  Please complete the application, even if you're not sure, and we will help direct you through the process. 

Taking over an existing establishment or one has been closed for less than a year? Complete this application and submit it to EH with the plan review fee prior to assuming the ownership.  It is unlawful to operate a food establishment without a valid permit.  Do this prior to closing. 

Food trucks, other mobile food units, and push carts? These applications may include further plan review for new trucks and an agreement required from the commissary.  Submit a complete application with menu and $75 plan review fee.  For help with a finding a commissary, expand your search to include a shared kitchen (see below).

Are you thinking about partnering in one of Orange County's incubator, community kitchens, and shared kitchen?    Operators wanting to prepare and sell food as a caterer, or operators needing a commissary, may be interested in shared kitchen facilities.  Submit a complete application with menu and $75 plan review fee.

Temporary food for fairs, festivals, and other public exhibitions?  Prior to the event, organizers must submit page 2 and 3 of the application.  Food vendors must submit the remaining application with menu, food source information, and a $75 fee.  Please contact us if you are in doubt whether you need to submit documentation for an exemption. 

Still not sure about a retail food business, check out this Road Map presented by Piedmont Food and Agricultural Processing.

Fee Schedule

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