The Department's Food Safety and Security Office is responsible for the enforcement of the Virginia Food laws, the Virginia Egg Law, the Virginia Apple Marking Law, the Vinegar Law and related regulations within retail food establishments (except restaurants), food processing and manufacturing establishments, and food warehouse establishments.
The state is divided into territories with a Food Safety Specialist assigned to each. The Food Safety Specialist is responsible for conducting all food safety activities within that territory.
Food safety activities are conducted through a variety of methods including, but not limited to, unannounced sanitary inspections of facilities, sampling of food products, investigation of consumer complaints, consultations with consumers and the food industry, and cooperative working relationships with other food safety agencies such as state and local health departments, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
A significant part of food safety rests with you, the consumer, and the way you handle and store food once it is purchased.
Visit the consumers' food safety site for food handling information and tips; even a quiz for kids.
Food Safety is responsible for the enforcement of the following regulations:
- Retail Regulations (2VAC 5-580)
- Carbonated and Still Water Bottling Plants and Beverages (2VAC 5-540)
- Infant Formula (2VAC 5-560)
- Food For Human Consumption (2VAC 5-600)
- Tolerances and Prohibitions Applicable To Sausage (2VAC 5-550)
- Tolerances and Prohibitions Applicable To Ground Beef (2VAC 5-590)
The following hard copy educational and resource materials are available, at no charge:
- Starting Your Food Business
- Keeping Your Food Safe
- A Quick Consumer Guide to Safe Food Handling
- Farmer's Market Guide
- Understanding the Label
- Sanitizing - Tips on Sanitizing Your Food Processing Area
- Temperature - Tips on Cooking and Storing Your Food
Copies of the Virginia food laws and regulations are available for distribution.