Exploring current issues in Food Safety helps Cobb & Douglas Public Health keep lines of communication open within our diverse community. Our Food Safety Partnership Panel video series regularly highlights topics that have generated broad discussion.
If you are interested in being a part of one of our Partnership Panels and/or have a topic you would like to see discussed, please contact Karen Gulley at Karen.Gulley@dph.ga.gov.
Food Safety Partnership Panels
Ep. #11 – Park Foods
Ep. #10 – Typhoid Mary
Ep. #9 – New Food Safety Rules
Ep. #8 – Personal Hygiene/EHP
Ep. #7 – Food Allergen Awareness
Ep. #6 – Mobile Food
Ep. #5 – Live Animals in Food Svc.
Ep. #4 – Multi-Cultural Food Safety
Ep. #3 – Food Defense
Ep. #2 – High Risk Populations
Ep. #1 – Common Violations
- Most Common Violations
- High Risk Populations
- Food Defense
- Multi-cultural Food Safety Challenges and Opportunities
- Live Animals in Food Service
- Special Food Operations
- Food Allergen Awareness/Response to Emergencies in Food Service
- Personal Hygiene and Employee Health
- New Food Safety Rules
- Typhoid Mary: The Power of One
- Park Foods
Food Service FAQs
What do I need to open a restaurant?
Please refer to the basic requirements to open a restaurant in Cobb and Douglas counties.
What are the basic requirements for a mobile food unit?
Basic requirements for mobile food units (i.e. food trucks) can be found here.
How do I obtain a food service permit?
To obtain a food service permit, please review the resources located here, and complete the appropriate application and submit it, along with the applicable fees, to the appropriate Environmental Health office. An Environmental Health Specialist will then contact you to guide you through the permitting process.
How do I report a foodborne illness?
To report a foodborne illness, please call 770-435-7815 or complete a Report a Foodborne Illness Form and email it to Yolanda.Farmer@dph.ga.gov (Cobb Environmental Health) or Jennifer.Beltz@dph.ga.gov (Douglas Environmental Health).
How can I improve my food service inspection score?
Please contact your area inspector at 770-435-7815 for a consultation.
How can I prepare my establishment for inspection?
The best way to prepare your establishment for inspection under the Georgia Food Code is to eliminate all risk factors. Please click here for a reference guide on how to better prepare your establishment for an inspection under the new Georgia Food Code.
What should I do if my restaurant’s water service is interrupted?
Please click here for more information regarding water interruption precautions and preparation.
What signs need to be posted in a food service facility?
The following signs are to be posted in most food service facilities:
- Choking Aid: This sign is to be posted and maintained in clear view of guests and workers in a conspicuous place or places on the premises—usually in the dining area(s)–for use in the event of a choking emergency, as required by the department
- No Smoking/Smoking Permitted: A sign bearing the words ‘No Smoking’ or the international ‘No Smoking’ symbol shall be placed on all entrances or in a position clearly visible upon entry into food service facilities. If a food service establishment has a smoking exemption that is compliant with the Georgia Smokefree Air Act, signage must be posted that states ‘Smoking Permitted, No One Under the Age of 18 Allowed’ on all entrances or in a position clearly visible upon entry into the food service establishment.
- Employees Must Wash Hands–Handwashing Signage: A sign or poster that notifies food service employees to wash their hands shall be provided at all handwashing sinks that are used by them.
Links to these signs and other resources are provided for your use in the Food Service Resources section (located below this FAQ); however, you may provide your own. Keep in mind that your No Smoking sign must state the Georgia code provision that applies: O.C.G.A. § 31-12A-1 et seq.
FAQ Pertaining to the New Rules and Regulations
What do I need to do to comply with Employee Health Policy requirements?
Our Employee Health requirements are located in 511-6-1-.03(4) within the Rules and Regulations for Food Service. The person-in-charge (PIC) should be able to show that all of the facility’s conditional and established food employees have been informed of the reporting requirements and that the PIC knows when to restrict and exclude food workers, as well as how to determine when they are allowed to return to work in accordance with all applicable rules and regulations. The following documents will assist you with compliance; however, you are welcome to use other documents that cover the same elements:
Who should I designate as my Certified Food Safety Management (CFSM), and what CFSM courses are accepted in Georgia?
When determining who will be designated as a Certified Food Safety Manager (CFSM) for your food service facility, please keep in mind that the CFSM must be a person with authority over the establishment’s operation, such as a manager or owner.
The following Food Safety Management courses are accepted:
- Prometric, Inc.
- National Registry of Food and Drug Officials
- 360training.com, Inc.
For more information on classes, please visit our Food Safety Training page.
Can my food service facility receive deliveries after it has closed for the day?
The latest update to the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Rules and Regulations for Food Service does allow for after hours (a.k.a. key drop) deliveries if certain conditions are met. Basic guidelines for this delivery method and a sample of a contractual agreement can be found at the following links:
What are the 8 most common food allergens?
The eight foods most common food allergens are:
- Crustacean shellfish
- Tree nuts
For more information on food allergens, please check out the information provided at: http://www.fda.gov/food/resourcesforyou/consumers/ucm079311.htm
What can I do to plan for emergency situations in my food service facility?
Please click here for information on how to develop an emergency action plan for your food service facility.
How do I safely clean up vomit or fecal events in my food service facility?
The cleanup process that occurs after a vomit or fecal event is very important since these substances may be contaminated with highly infectious pathogens, such as norovirus. Norovirus is a highly contagious microorganism – as few as 10 viral particles can make you sick, and a single vomiting incident can spread as many as 300,000 viral particles into the environment. Matters are further complicated by the fact that norovirus is resistant to many disinfectants, so choosing the right product for disinfection is essential.
The following materials are provided to help guide you through the safe and effective cleanup of vomit or fecal material:
Food Service Resources Pertaining to the New Rules and Regulations
More Employee Health tools (including Return to Work documents) are available on the Georgia Department of Public Health’s website at the following link (scroll down to “Employee Health Information” section):
Other Food Service Resources
“No Smoking” Poster (“No Smoking” window decals are available from our Environmental Health offices upon request.)
The Cooling Thermometer