Q: If you see an inspector at a restaurant or food facility does it mean something is wrong?

A: Mostly likely no, every food facility needs to have routine inspections done to make sure they are keeping up to code. So, we are usually at restaurants just getting their rountine inspections done for the year. 

Q: How many inspections do restaurants get a year?

A: Each Food Facility is different and several factors like the amount of food being served, if they have potentially hazardous food, and past food inspections determine how many inspections each facility gets per year. Most restaurants are twice a year and grocery stores or facilities with packaged food are usually once. 

Q: On an inspection form what is the difference between a critical and non critical violation. 

A:  Critical Violation: means a violation of the Colorado Retail Food Regulations that, if in noncompliance, is more likely than other violations to contribute to food contamination, illness or an environmental health hazard.  
Non-critical violation: means a violation of the regulations that usually relates to general sanitation, operational controls, sanitation standard, operating procedures, facilities or structures, equipment design or general maintenance.

Q: What are potentially hazardous food?

A: The Food Code defines a potentially hazardous food (PHF) as a natural or synthetic food that requires temperature control because it is capable of supporting:

 • The rapid and progressive growth of infectious or toxigenic microorganisms, 
 • The growth and toxin production of Clostridium botulinum, or
 • In raw shell eggs, the growth of Salmonella enteritidis. The phrase does not mean a naturally dangerous food (for example: a poisonous mushroom). 

Q: Which Foods Would be Considered Potentially Hazardous?

A:  1. Animal foods that are raw or heat treated such as:
 • Milk or milk products including cheese, sour cream, and whipped butter 
 • Meats including raw or partially cooked bacon
 • Shell eggs 
 • Fish 
 • Poultry and poultry    
 • Shellfish

 2. Food derived from plants that are heat treated including
• Onions (cooked and 
• Cooked rice • Soy protein products (example:Tofu)
• Potatoes (baked or boiled)

 3. Food derived from plants that consist of:
 • Cut melons, or
 • Raw seed sprouts. 

4. Garlic-in-oil, and other vegetable-in-oil mixtures that are not treated to prevent the growth and toxin production of C. botulinum;

 5. Certain sauces, breads, and pastries containing potentially hazardous food (examples: meat, cheese, cooked vegetables or cream)