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A permanent food business is an establishment operating at a fixed location for more than twenty-one (21) consecutive days.

The Food Protection Program reviews and approves applications for the construction of new food establishments or the remodeling of existing ones. The process begins by submitting plans to the Food Protection Program. Plans are reviewed to ensure that the establishment will have all the necessary facilities and equipment. Permits are not transferable.

Before you start, please review the Food Service Plan Submittal Tip Sheet.

Change of ownership:
When changing ownership of an existing food establishment, the original owner does not receive a refund or any proration of permit fees and the new owner must apply for a permit to operate.

How to renew an existing food business permit:
If you are renewing an existing food business permit (with no changes to ownership, facility, or menu,) you may do so using our online services portal.

How to get a new food business permit:
Complete the required 3-Step Plan Review process by selecting the tabs below to begin.

Step 1: Permanent food service plan guide

Checklists covering every area of your business.
  • Plan guide for permanent food service plan review
    The Plan Guide is a checklist of items you will need to review and include in your final plans to ensure that you've covered every area of your food business. Use this Plan Guide if you are starting a permanent or catering food service establishment.
  • Attention City of Seattle Plan Review applicants:

    All City of Seattle food plan review submittals MUST be submitted directly to the Health Department. City of Seattle applicants must submit Two (2) sets of plans — Required for City of Seattle and King County projects. Please check with your local building department for the number of approved Health Department plans required for their building department submittal for special projects.
    • Cover sheet (See Step 2 above)
    • Plan review application (Step 2)
    • Appropriate plan review application fee

Please refer to the Permanent Plan Review Guide above for all other requirements to ensure that plans are complete before submitting to the Health Department.

Step 2: Plan review application

Submit an application for a Plans Examiner to review the proposed plan for your business.

Once you complete your final plans of how your establishment will be set up for business according to the Plan Guides in Step 1, you will need to submit them for review along with the Plan Review Application.

  1. Go to Environmental Health's online services portal.
  2. If you are a new user, click on "First-time users register here."
    • Click on “Register if you are an individual or a food establishment plan review applicant”
    • Once you get your account name and password, click on "Registered users log in here."
  3. If you have previously created an account, click on "Registered users log in here."
  4. Once you are logged in, from the left side menu, click on "Permanent Food Plan Review or Mobile Food Plan Review."
  5. Click on "Add Permanent Food Plan Review or add Mobile Food Plan Review " and complete the application form, attach your application document, and pay the fee.
  6. After you have paid the application fee successfully, you will be able to print the application for your records, you will receive a confirmation email, and you can check the status of your application at

Please note that you must complete an application in its entirety. Therefore, please make sure that you have all the necessary information and application documents before you start an application. You can review:

Permanent Food Plan Review Application documents checklist:

Site Plan—show the facility in relation to wells (if applicable), septic systems (if applicable), streets, sidewalks, parking, and garbage areas.

Menu—provide a detailed menu of all the food and beverages you will be serving or a list of food and beverages you will be selling.

Floor Plan—provide a floor plans of the entire facility. Floor plan must show location of all equipment (sinks, refrigeration, countertop appliances, cooking equipment, hot water heater, etc.), restrooms, storage areas, etc.

Equipment List of Schedule—provide the make and model number of all equipment such as refrigeration units, hot water tanks, including countertop appliances, etc.

Finish Schedule—provide the materials used for all floors, walls, and ceilings in all areas.

Seating Arrangement—show the placement of chairs and tables for both indoor and outdoor seating.

Step 3: Permanent food service permit application

After your business plan has been approved by a Plans Examiner in Step 2, the final step is to apply for a permanent food service business permit.

Plans Examiners

Contact a Plans Examiner for questions about Food Service Plans ONLY. Plans Examiners cannot respond to questions about Temporary Event Permits or Farmers Markets. Contact the Plans Examiner serving the area of King County where your food establishment is located as noted below.

For businesses located within the cities of Burien, Seattle, Mercer Island, Shoreline, Vashon Island, and Unincorporated King County (Skyway and White Center only):

  • Pat Murphy: 206-263-8484 or 206-263-9566
  • John Shin: 206-263-8531 or 206-263-9566

For businesses located elsewhere in King County (cities not listed above) and in Unincorporated King County, please contact:

  • Mike Bratcher: 206-477-8144 or 206-477-8050
  • Diane Agasid: 206-263-2157 or 206-477-8050

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