Each facility providing food to the public in the Municipality of Anchorage must have a food establishment permit. This includes grocery stores, restaurants, warehouses, temporary food booths, mobile food vendors and food carts. Permits and inspections within the Municipality of Anchorage are handled by the Anchorage Food Safety and Sanitation Program (FSS). In areas of Alaska outside the Municipality of Anchorage, the Department of Environmental Conservation issues the appropriate permits.
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Food Worker Cards
As of January 1, 2010, food workers in Anchorage are required to have a food worker card. You can obtain a food worker card by passing the food worker exam. NEW Update for OnLine Testing (click here)
Click here for more Food Worker Card Testing information.
Employees in food establishments that do not handle food or clean dishes and utensils are not required to have a food worker card. These include individuals responsible only for greeting, seating, or transacting the exchange of money or credit with customers; grocery checkers or grocery baggers; delivery drivers; patients or residents in an institution; those who assists patients or residents in an institution with meals; volunteers; stockers; those responsible for receiving, stocking, shipping, delivering, or picking product in a warehouse; and those under the age of 18 assisting in a school kitchen with school meal service.
If you have questions about food worker cards, please feel free to call us at 343-4200.
Learn About the Food Safety Regulations
Click here to download the Anchorage Food Code. The Anchorage Food Code establishes definitions; sets standards for management and personnel, food operations, and equipment and facilities; and provides for food establishment plan review, permit issuance, inspection, employee restriction, and permit suspension within the Municipality of Anchorage.
Click here to download the Anchorage Food Code Booklet. or Click here to download in Spanish. This booklet is designed as a reference for anyone responsible for preparing, serving, or storing food for public consumption in the Municipality of Anchorage.
Opening a New Food Establishment
If you are building a new food facility in Anchorage or remodeling an existing food facility in Anchorage, the first step is gathering information to be submitted for plan review. More information can be found on our Plan Review web page.
After plans are approved, you must apply for a food establishment permit before opening to the public. Once an opening inspection is conducted, the facility may open to the public for service.
Change of Ownership
If you are buying an existing establishment in Anchorage without remodeling or changing the menu extensively, a plan review is not required. Simply complete a permit application. Be aware that food facility permits are not transferable. For a change of ownership, an application for a permit must be made no less than 7 days prior to the change of ownership accompanied by the appropriate fees.
Food Protection Manager Certification
Each facility with an F002 or F003 permit must have at least one person certified as a food protection manager.
The Anchorage School District states that 84 different languages are spoken in the school district. We recognize that many different languages are spoken in food establishments as well, sometimes leading to communication difficulties for inspectors and establishment operators. In an effort to help us communicate better, we developed a booklet called "Let Your Fingers Do The Talking." This booklet translates common phrases that are used during inspections into the most common languages we see in food establishments: English, Spanish, Korean and Chinese. Much more than a common translation book, this booklet allows for "live" translation during inspections. If you have suggestions for this booklet, feel free to discuss with your inspector, contact our office or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .