Food Service Establishment


Permit for Service

Food service establishments are defined as establishments which prepare or serve food to the public for pay. Food service establishments must possess a valid permit from Environmental Health before preparing or serving food to the public. A permit is issued when an establishment meets all the requirements set forth by North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.


Evaluations are conducted at regular intervals to ensure compliance with state rules and regulations. During the evaluation, points are deducted for non-compliant items observed during the inspection. Upon completing the inspection, the Environmental Health Specialist will discuss noncompliant items and post a score which reflects compliance.

Grading is based on a 10-point grading scale and is scored as follows:

  • Grade A 90-100%
  • Grade B 80-89.5%
  • Grade C 70-79.5%

Grade Cards

Sanitation grade cards are posted by the Environmental Health Specialist in locations readily visible to the public upon entry into an inspected establishment. The owner or manager is responsible for ensuring the sanitation score remains posted and readily visible as required by law.

Locating Scores

To find a restaurant score, view the What's the Grade (PDF). Once the document is open hit 'Control "F" ' on your keyboard. You may enter in the restaurant's name or address.

Useful Documents