Health Approval & Permits
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Requirements to operate a food service establishment

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Food Premises

Any place where food intended for public consumption is sold, offered for sale, supplied, handled, prepared, packaged, displayed, served, processed, stored, transported or dispensed. This includes restaurants, tasting rooms, mobiles, food stores, food manufacturing/processing, etc. 

Note: Preparation of foods for the public must be done in an approved kitchen. Home kitchens are generally not allowed.  Some exceptions apply, contact your local Environmental Health Officer for further details.

To apply for approval or a permit follow the steps below.

Step 1: Review the information in The Guide – Applying for Food Premises Approval. The Guide will help you determine what documentation you need to provide with your application. For information specific to Mobile Units also review the Mobile Food Premises Guidelines.

Step 2: Follow the process provided in The Guide and submit completed forms and documents to your local Health Protection office.  For your convenience forms and documents can be accessed below.

Step 3: Once these documents are submitted, reviewed and approved, the Environmental Health Officer will conduct an inspection prior to opening to ensure the facility was constructed and functional in accordance with the Food Premises Regulation and the previously approved plans.

Note: Slaughter Establishments - Licencing is required for all Slaughter Establishments. Class A or B Slaughter Establishments (provincially licenced) and Class D or E (on-farm Slaughter Establishments) require a licence. See the Ministry of Agriculture site for more detailed information.

Additional resources can be found under Food Safety Resources.

Food Processing

Food processors are a type of food premises where raw food is made ready to eat.  This includes washing, rinsing, cooking, smoking, canning and other processing of food not intended for immediate consumption.

Approval is required to become a food processor, including approval of the facility  premises meant for this purpose.

To apply for approval follow the steps below:
 
Step 1: Review the information in The Guide – Applying for Food Premises Approval. This guide will help you determine what documentation you need to provide with your application. Submit completed forms and documents above to your local Health protection office. Please note FOODSAFE is recommended and there are food processor specific sanitation and food safety plan for approval.
 
Step 2: Once these documents are submitted, reviewed and approved, the Environmental Health Officer will conduct an inspection prior to opening to ensure the facility was constructed and functional in accordance with the Food Premises Regulation and the previously approved plans.
 

Temporary Food Service

Any place that prepares food for immediate consumption at temporary locations, events, or markets for 14 or less days per year. 

  • If you are an approved food premises you are still required to apply for a Temporary Food Service for off-site food sales.
  • If you are an event coordinator, please review the Temporary Event Coordinator’s Planning Guide and complete the Temporary Event Coordinator Application.  Contact an Environmental Health Officer well in advance of the event to discuss the requirements specific to the event before any information packages go out to vendors.

To apply for a permit follow the steps below:

Step 1: Review the Temporary Food Services Guidelines to determine whether you are applying for a Lower Risk or Higher Risk permit.  Note: some foods are Permit Exempt.

Step 2: Submit your information to the local Health Protection office at least 14 days prior to your event. Application received with less than 14 days notice may not be processed.

Step 3: Once these documents are submitted, reviewed and approved, a Permit to Operate will be issued.

Markets 

Approval is required to sell higher risk pre-packaged food not meant for immediate consumption, shell eggs, and/or frozen raw food of animal origin (meats, poultry or fish) at temporary locations such as Farmer’s Markets.

Food intended for immediate consumption at a Market requires application for a Temporary Food Service (see above).

To apply for approval follow the steps below:

Step 1: Review Guideline for the Sale of Foods at Temporary Food Markets to determine if you are selling Higher Risk food and require Approval.  Lower Risk home prepared foods can be sold and do not need authorization from an Environmental Health Officer.  A list of Higher Risk and Lower Risk foods can be found in the Guideline.

Step 2: For Higher Risk Food submit the application and all required information (listed on application) to your local Health Protection office.

Step 3: Once these documents are submitted, reviewed and approved, a Letter of Confirmation will be issued.

 

As a step towards reconciliation, Interior Health acknowledges the land that we live, work, and play on as the traditional territories of the Dakelh Dene, Ktunaxa, Nlaka’pamux, Secwepemc, St’at’imc, Syilx and Tsilhqot’in peoples. It is with humility that we continue to strengthen our relationships with the First Nation, Métis, and Inuit peoples of the interior.
MoH     PCQO