Retail operations that store, prepare or package food for consumers require a valid Retail Food Establishment License dated for the current year.
Retail Food Establishment license fees are based on the type and size of the operation and are only valid for a calendar year.
(all the food rules used by inspectors)

(The packet is a fillable digital form when downloaded)

(The packet is a fillable digital form when downloaded)

OPENING A NEW FOOD FACILITY (including remodels)

The first step in opening a new food facility in Pueblo County is completing a Plan Review Packet.  The plan review packet is a general outline of the food operation and its main requests include menu items, equipment specs, and facility layout.  
Failure to provide the required information may delay the plan review process.  A plan review packet requires a $100 review fee and usually takes 14 business days to complete.  
Upon completion of the plan review, a pre-opening inspection of the facility and operations is conducted leading to the final step, licensing.  At the pre-opening inspection, a Retail Food Establishment license form is completed, processed (with appropriate fee) and then operations can begin.  
Contact the Food Safety Program about appropriate Retail Food Establishment license fees for the current year.  

It is necessary to submit detailed plans and specifications of a proposed newly constructed retail food establishment and/or the affected areas of any proposed extensively remodeled retail food establishment.   
Each retail food operator, or person intending to become a retail food operator, shall be responsible for submitting all plans and specifications. Those assisting an operator may submit plans and specifications on the operator's authority. 
The Food Safety Program shall be consulted before preparation of plans and specifications. Approval of both plans and specifications is necessary before construction begins. A minimum of two weeks shall be necessary for the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment to review the plans.  
Any revision of plans must be submitted to the Department for review and modification or approval.  NOTE: Even if the Pueblo Regional Building Department has conducted a plan review and approved plans, the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment must conduct a separate plan review using a separate set of blueprints and a completed plan review packet.

When a remodel of an existing facility is planned, it is subject to a new plan review.  


For existing facilities that wish to formally change ownership (which is changing the legal owner, attaining a new Colorado Department of Revenue Sales Tax ID number and getting a new Retail Food Establishment license) a new License Application must be filled out, and a plan review packet for the new operations and a special inspection may be required. 
Licenses from other establishments are non-transferable.  Normal plan reviews fees apply including a $75 special inspection fee for the Change of Ownership Inspection.

MOBILE UNITS (Food Trucks)

If food vending is to take place out of a mobile unit (food truck, ice cream truck, etc) a separate plan review packet is required: Plan Review Packet for Mobile Units and Push Carts.  The mobile plan review is tailored for food production in a limited space and of a limited amount.  
Physical facilities, equipment requirements and water availability are the main requirements of the packet.  A $100 plan review fee applies and the subsequent licensing fee will be determined by operations.  An inspection of the proposed mobile unit (all equipment working and present) must be completed before operations begin.
Most mobile units will not be fully contained and it is likely that vendors must use a commissary.  A commissary is a commercial establishment that is a currently licensed Retail Food Establishment where mobile vendors can use facilities not available in the mobile unit such as:
  • Three compartment sink
  • Vegetable prep sinks
  • Ice machine
  • Larger refrigeration
  • Dry storage areas
  • Preparation tables
  • Water Supply
Commissaries are essential to mobile unit operations because they provide the missing equipment and space needed for proper food storage/preparation.  The mobile plan review includes a Commissary Agreement to be filled out and signed by the commissary owner. 

For additional information about operating a mobile food unit in the city pueblo check out our collaborative site.


Temporary events are events that last less than 5 days, such as celebrations, festivals, and fairs.  Food vending at temporary events is modified and requires approval from the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment.  The first step is properly filling out a Vendor Packet.  
Once submitted, the Food Program will review the packet for completeness and then confirm operations in-person at the event.  A Temporary Event Food License is required and a copy must be provided with the application or attained before the event (this license is different from a normal food license).

Event Coordinators:  If you are an event coordinator of a temporary event there is an additional packet required.  The Coordinator Packet is a plan for the location of the event, the event time frame, the services provided (water supply, grey water disposal, restroom facilities) and a list of vendors.  
The coordinator packet is the first step in planning a larger event with vendors and should be received before vendor applications.

Increase Fees for Food License 
Colorado state legislature increased the retail food establishment license fees throughout Colorado with House Bill 16-1401. This will be implemented over the next three years beginning September 2016. Below are the future fee increases for retail food establishments operating in Pueblo County. The increase will be implemented upon license renewal. All new licenses after September 1, 2016, will pay the new 2017 fees.

Licensing Category
1/1/2017 Fee
1/1/2018 Fee
1/1/2019 Fee
Restaurant 0-100 seats
Restaurant 101-200 seats
Restaurant over 200 seats
Grocery Stores with Deli, up to 15,000 sq. ft.
Grocery Stores with Deli, over 15,000 sq. ft.
Grocery Store without Deli, up to 15,000 sq. ft.
Grocery Store without Deli, over 15,000 sq. ft.
Limited Retail Food Service
Mobile Unit, prepackaged potentially hazardous food
Mobile Unit, Full Service
Oil and Gas
Special Events
Fees will be established by each county or district public health agency.

Retail Food Establishment licenses could be obtained at the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment, 101 W. 9 Street, Pueblo, CO, 81003 Monday-Friday, 8:00AM-5:00PM.

For additional information call (719) 583-4307.