Food Safety News

New Food Establishment Rating System

Green, Yellow, Red rating system

The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) is continuously striving to enhance the quality of services we provide to the public and promote active managerial control of risk factors most commonly associated with foodborne disease in food establishments. In order to achieve this goal a new food establishment inspection and rating system commenced in November 2016.

As of September 9, 2016, the Regulations of the Washoe County District Board of Health Governing Food Establishments have been amended to eliminate sections related to grades and grading of food establishments and to introduce provisions from the current version of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Model Food Code.  The WCHD will no longer issue a numerical score to reflect the status of inspection results and will instead introduce a system that more accurately reflects the occurrence of foodborne illness risk factors in food establishments. The final version of the amended regulations can be found on the WCHD Regulation page.

The new food establishment inspection rating system will use a color coded scale, similar to a red, yellow, green stop light, to reflect the status of out of compliance foodborne illness risk factors.  The easy to recognize rating system will assist the public in understanding the inspection results of all food establishments.  Begining in May, 2017, inspection results can be viewed at

To aid food establishment operators with the new inspection process, and for more specific information on the new rating system, please see the Food Establishment Field Inspection Guide and the associated Food Establishment Inspection Form.

If you have any additional questions regarding the new regulations or inspection process, contact The Food Protection Services program at

NEW! -Free Food Safety email listserve

Would you like to receive information about free food safety trainings and workshops offered by Washoe County Environmental Health Services? Then join the Food Safety listserve and receive information about upcoming trainings that will cover topics such as Food Regulations, HACCP Plan requirements, best practices, and other topics of interest to all restaurant owners, operators and employees. To be notified of workshop times and locations please click here and sign up for the topic "Food Safety."