January 9, 2023 (ALERT)

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January 9, 2023


About Us

Maricopa County Environmental Services provides essential, regional environmental services seeking to prevent and remove environmental health risks. The Department’s Environmental Health Specialists and Field Technicians are in the community every day making sure that among other things, food in all the eating and drinking establishments in the County is protected from contamination, that water supplies throughout the County are safe to drink, and that vector borne health illnesses and risks are minimized. It is our belief that with continued support, future generations will reap the benefits of today’s actions.

Need assistance en Español or in 中文 for your food related business?


Nuestros representantes o enlaces para negocios hispanos de venta de alimentos están disponibles para asistirles entendiendo las necesidades culturales de su negocio y asistiéndoles en su idioma.

Do you need to make sure that your ethnic foods meet Maricopa County Health Code standards? Our language liaisons are available to assist you!

Chinese Words


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Is Your Food Establishment Ready to Score High?

Food Event

As the Super Bowl approaches, more than one million individuals are expected to arrive in Maricopa County to attend the ‘Big Game’ or one of the many other events that will be happening across the valley. 

As an operator, it is important that you ask yourself the following: Are your current food service operations adequate? Do you need to expand your operation?

Whether it is determining the amount of dry food storage, cold food storage, transportation of food, garbage/ waste pick-up, or even code requirements, now is the time to begin planning for these needs.  

An increase in customers may change the operational needs of your business, so as manager, you should consider your establishment’s operational capacity (i.e., do we have what we need to operate during our peak demand?)  

To ensure that you are prepared, please reach out to your Environmental Services inspector for assistance or contact the Department at:

Envquickservicerestaurants@maricopa.gov (facilities such as fast-food restaurants)

Envfullservicerestaurants@maricopa.gov (facilities that are full-service restaurants)

Envretailgrocery@maricopa.gov (facilities like grocery stores or retail food markets)

Envspecialtyprograms@maricopa.gov (mobile food/special events/plan review) 

Safe Transportation of Food

Food Transportation

Two of the Center for Disease Control’s leading causes of foodborne illness are improper temperature control and contamination of foods. These factors are an even greater concern when foods are prepared and transported to another location for service. Perishable food is required to be held either below 41°F or above 135°F. Additionally, all food must be protected from contamination during preparation, storage, transport, and service. Food establishments should not accept any food deliveries where the food is out of temperature, unprotected, or from a questionable source.  

Below is a list of points to consider when transporting food:  

  • Do I have the means to maintain safe food temperatures during transport?  
  • Do I have the means to maintain safe temperatures at the delivery location and reheat the foods if necessary? 
  • Are the vehicles or trailers clean and free of contaminants that may enter the food during transport?  
  • Am I storing my foods in a way to prevent potential cross-contamination and tampering during the transport process (e.g., raw foods separated from ready-to-eat foods)?
  • Who is monitoring the transport of my food?  
  • Are my staff trained on procedures that prevent contamination and maintain safe food temperatures? 
  • Do my employees have the necessary equipment to properly wash their hands and prevent bare hand contact with food?  

References: Guidance for Industry Sanitary Transportation of Food.  

Planning for an Emergency: Food Establishments

Non-hazardous liquid waste hauler

The best way to protect your business, your staff, and your customers is to plan for the unexpected.   Emergencies at food establishments may include any of the following imminent health hazards: fire, flood, extended interruption of electrical or water service, sewage backup, misuse of poisonous or toxic materials, the onset of an apparent foodborne illness outbreak, gross unsanitary conditions, or other circumstance that may endanger public health.  In accordance with the FDA food code, a permit holder shall immediately discontinue operations and notify the (Maricopa County Services) Department if an imminent health hazard may exist and shall obtain approval from the Department before resuming operations.  

Please review the document below to aid you in your planning efforts:  

Emergency Action Plan for Retail Food Establishments  

Please contact Maricopa Environmental Services Department using one of the email addresses below if you have any questions as you develop your plan. We will assist you so if an emergency occurs, you can take a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach.  

Envquickservicerestaurants@maricopa.gov (facilities such as fast-food restaurants)

Envfullservicerestaurants@maricopa.gov (facilities that are full-service restaurants)

Envretailgrocery@maricopa.gov (facilities like grocery stores or retail food markets)

Envspecialtyprograms@maricopa.gov (mobile food/special events/plan review) 

Special Event and Mobile Food Vendors: Know the Rules to Play it Safe

Food Event (1)

Super Bowl LVII promises to be a fun and amazing time for the residents of Maricopa County and those visiting from all over the United States and the world. To participate in the festivities of the Super Bowl, many businesses and people will be exploring ways to sell and give away food.  Numerous special events will be taking place throughout Maricopa County during Super Bowl week. Therefore, it is very important that anyone interested in selling or giving away food, even if it is only temporarily, know the following: 

  • A permit is required from the Environmental Services Department to sell or give away food or beverages.
  • All food must be prepared at a permitted restaurant or commissary - no homemade food is allowed unless you are registered with the Arizona Cottage Food Program (see guidance for all permit exemptions below).
  • Vendors that are only selling commercially packaged, non-time, Temperature Controlled for Safety (non-TCS) foods such as candy, chips, bottled water, and soda are not required to obtain a permit.
Food Inspector (1)

If you are interested in selling or giving away food, please contact the Department for more information:  


Special Events 

Mobile Food Establishments  

Permit Exemptions   

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