You are holding in your hands the only place on the internet where restaurant inspection reports are found in one location. It’s the Food Safety News Inspection Page and its just been updated thanks to the work of Jonan Pilet, author, writer, and social media guru.
Local public health departments regularly inspect businesses serving food to ensure restaurants and other food retail outlets are following safe food handling procedures. Local laws regulate how frequently these inspections take place, and what specific items the inspectors look for, but, in general, environmental health inspectors check that safeguards are in place to protect food from contamination by food handlers, cross-contamination, and contamination from other sources in the restaurant.
Some examples include ensuring employees regularly wash their hands in a sink equipped with soap, hot water and paper towels; utensils and surfaces that contact raw meat are not used to prepare ready-to-eat foods; and that rodents and other pests are not present.
The reports generated by these inspections can be ordered from your local health department, or many local health departments are now making the reports of these inspectors available online so consumers can make educated choices on where to eat.
Food Safety News compiled the list of available online restaurant and food establishment inspection records. To find inspection records from your area, view the links here. If we’ve missed your area and you know of an online source for inspection data, please email us a link at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Victims of food-borne illnesses that turn to this Directory might also benefit from these tips from USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service:
- Preserve the evidence. If a portion of the suspect food is available, wrap it securely, mark “DANGER” and freeze it. Save all the packaging materials, such as cans or cartons. Write down the food type, the date, other identifying marks on the package, the time consumed, and when the onset of symptoms occurred. Save any identical unopened products.
- Seek treatment as necessary. If the victim is in an “at risk” group, seek medical care immediately. Likewise, if symptoms persist or are severe (such as bloody diarrhea, excessive nausea and vomiting, or high temperature), call your doctor.
- Call the local health department if the suspect food was served at a large gathering, from a restaurant or other food service facility, or if it is a commercial product.
- Call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) if the suspect food is a USDA-inspected product and you have all the packaging.
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