Retail Food Facility Inspection Information is Available Online
The Department of Environmental Health's Food Facility Inspection Search allows the public to search online for the most recent routine inspection information for all retail food facilities in San Diego County.
San Diego County's approximately 12,000 retail food establishments are inspected on a routine basis to monitor compliance with state and local laws, such as the California Retail Food Code (CalCode). Unannounced inspections are performed by a Registered Environmental Health Specialist (REHS). The REHS provides the facility with a signed copy of the food facility inspection report at the end of the inspection. Under state law each food facility must maintain a copy of the most recent environmental health inspection report onsite, and must make the report available for review by interested parties upon request.
Our inspection methodology prioritizes inspections based on relative risk and ensures the focus of inspections is on food preparation practices and public health interventions. For a detailed explanation of the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health's food inspection program, please refer to our Retail Food Facility Operator's Guide.
San Diego County's Grade Card System
San Diego County requires all restaurants to post an "A", "B" or "C" card in the front window. The grade reflects the food safety and sanitation level during the last inspection. An "A" grade means the facility earned a score of 90 to 100 percent and is in satisfactory compliance with state law; a "B" means the facility earned a score of 80 to 89 percent and needs improvement in operations and/or structure; a "C" means the facility earned a score of 79 percent or less and is a failing grade.
When major violations are found, they are immediately corrected or a suitable alternative is implemented until they are corrected. Examples of major violations include unsafe temperatures of potentially hazardous food, improper hand-washing, food from an unapproved source, or improper cleaning and sanitizing of food contact surfaces.
Notices & Closures
An Official Notice of Violation (NOV) is issued when the REHS determines the facility is not in compliance with the law. The notice includes the list of violations along with a specified time to correct each violation. The time period specified to correct the violation(s) depends on the type of violation. When an imminent health hazard is found, the facility is closed in the impacted areas. If the facility is required to close, the inspector will replace the grade card with a CLOSED sign, and list the reason for closure on the sign. A closed food facility must remain closed until written authorization to re-open is given by this department. All major violations must be corrected or a suitable alternative must be implemented before the facility is granted permission to re-open. The CLOSED sign is then replaced with a grade card. Conditions that require closure of a food facility include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Sewage back-up,
- Lack of potable hot/cold water under pressure,
- Power outage for an extended period of time preventing
Proper holding temperatures of potentially hazardous foods,
- Disease transmission
Reporting an Error
All efforts have been made to ensure that the information provided on this site accurately reflects the inspection reports prepared by DEH. Each inspection report contains inspection data such as the type of inspection, the result of the inspection (usually a score), and, if applicable, the major violation(s) observed. The data does not become an "error" when the problem/violation on the inspection report is corrected; that dated inspection report is historical data. DEH does not update this site based on submissions by operators stating that violations have been corrected or major violations eliminated. When the facility is inspected/ re-inspected, that data from the most recent inspection report is added to the existing data on the site. If an error is discovered, the inspection data will be corrected (usually within two business days of notification to DEH). Please contact the FHD Duty Specialist at (858) 505-6900 to report all errors.
Public Records Request
Food facility inspection reports are considered public information under the California Public Records Act. To obtain detailed information, please complete and return the Food & Housing Division's Public Records Request form to DEH.