Food Businesses and Permits
Notice of Temporary Waiver of Health Permit Fees for Hospitality Industry:
An ordinance of the Anchorage Municipal Assembly was approved temporarily waiving Anchorage Municipal Code (Title 16) permit fees for 2021 for the hospitality industry and certain other food permit users in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Please call (907) 343-4200 if you have questions about health permit fees. (See AO 2021-19s here)
Food Permit Applications:
application for a food permit
application for a temporary food permit
application for an event organizer (temporary food establishment)
(Our department will accept temporary or seasonal temporary food establishment permit
applications once the Event Coordinator application has been approved)
Print and bring to the office with you. All facilities providing food to the public in the Municipality of Anchorage must have a food permit. This includes grocery stores, restaurants, warehouses, temporary food booths, catering, mobile food vendors and food carts, and cottage food vendors. Permits and inspections within the Municipality of Anchorage are handled by the Anchorage Food Safety and Sanitation Program (FSS).
Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.
Food Worker Cards
Food workers in Anchorage are required to have a food worker card. You can obtain a food worker card by passing the food worker online test (Click here). Cost: $10.
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.
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
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 a Risk type 2 or Risk type 3 permit must have at least one person certified as a food protection manager.
Cottage foods are non-potentially hazardous food products made in a home kitchen for direct sales to the consumer that do not require time/temperature control for safety (TCS). Cottage food products include baked goods, pickled or fermented vegetables, candies, dried herbs and seasonings, vinegars, trail mix, etc. To apply for a license to sell cottage foods in the MOA, you will need the following (click here for FAQ):
- Copy of MOA Food Worker's Card
- Written list of ingredients and process for preparing each ingredient you want to be licensed to sell.
- Copy of pH test results for any products that are pickled or dried (see example cottage food list here.)
- After your application is approved, there is a $25/annual licensing fee. When selling at the market, this
Cottage Food Placard must be hung or placed on your table visible to consumers.
For more information, download the full cottage food FAQ here.
Read the brochure here.
Anchorage Food Code was updated in December 2017. The 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 read more.
The Anchorage School District states that 107 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 challenges 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 or contact our customer service office at 907-343-4200.
The Municipality of Anchorage Environmental Health Program seeks to have the services we provide meet or exceed the needs and expectations of our customers.
By taking this survey you will help us determine what we are doing well and where we can improve customer satisfaction while protecting public health and safety in our community.