Food Safety Program

The Environmental Public Health Division of Harris County Public Health (HCPH) is responsible for approximately 8,400 retail food establishments located within the unincorporated areas of the county and for 23 cities that do not have their own health departments.

Food Permits

Any business that sells, prepares, serves, or provides food directly to a consumer is a food establishment. By law, a food establishment must have a permit from Harris County Public Health to operate. To obtain this permit from the Environmental Public Health Division (EPH) of Harris County Public Health, an establishment must complete the Plan Review process for their specific foodservice operation.

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Foodborne Illness and Food Complaints

Food poisoning occurs when someone gets sick after eating contaminated food or drink. It is also called foodborne illness, foodborne disease, or food infection. However, symptoms may differ among the different types of foodborne diseases. Symptoms can sometimes be severe, and some foodborne illnesses can even be life-threatening.

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