Retail Food Safety

Retail Food Safety


What We Do


Our team of inspectors works with local restaurants and retail markets in Mesa County to ensure food safety. We offer education and answer questions for local food establishments. It’s our goal to be a community resource for our partners.

Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM)

Gerente Certificado de Protección de Alimentos (CFPM)

Steps to Obtain a License

A retail food license is required for any operation serving or selling food to the public. In order to get a license, a review of facility and food preparation plans is required. This includes the following types of food facilities and activities:

  • Restaurant
  • Grocery store
  • Convenience store
  • Catering
  • Preparing food for online sales
  • Mobile unit (food truck or push cart)
  • Temporary special events (farmers market)
  • Sale of pre-packaged foods, like pre-packaged frozen meat

If you plan to wholesale food, operate as a cottage food vendor, or prepare food containing marijuana, please review the requirements.

Nearly every new or significantly altered facility serving or selling food or beverages in Colorado must submit plans to the local health department before a license can be issued.

Mesa County Public Health reviews plans for facilities in Mesa County to make sure that the design and equipment in a facility are suitable for the safe storage, preparation, and service of the foods on the proposed menu or food list.

Applications for a plan review differ, based on the type of food operation you are proposing. Click the links below for a downloadable application to meet your needs:

Guide to Starting a New Food Business

Fixed Location Plan Review — Restaurant, Grocery, Gas Station, etc.

Mobile Unit Plan Review

The plan review application includes instructions for what must be included for review. Missing information will delay the plan review process. Information to include when submitting your plans:

1. Plan review application forms.
2. Menu or list of foods prepared on the premises.
3. Drawings/schedules:

Floor Plan Including all areas of the facility used for the storage, preparation, or service of food or drink, and areas used for other facility operations including storage of equipment, single-use items, and linens must be included with the floor plan.
Site Plan or layout of the building location with any outside equipment, including dumpsters, grease trap/interceptor, well, etc.
Plumbing Schedule Showing the location of all fixtures, floor drains, floor sinks, supply lines, drain lines, and backflow prevention devices. This also needs to include water heater location, make and model number, capacity, recovery rate, BTU or kW input.
Ventilation Schedule  Including exhaust capacity (CFM ratings) of all hoods, location of all hoods, and detailed shop drawings of all hoods (including length and width), and location of all make-up air registers, including CFM ratings for outside air.
Lighting Plan
Chemical and Personal Storage Areas

4. Equipment list showing make and model numbers. Specification sheets or spec sheets can be submitted in place of the equipment list.
5. Copy of Food Protection Manager Certification of owner or person in charge.
6. Copy of employee illness policy including clean-up procedures for vomit or diarrheal events.
7. $100 Application Fee.

Note: Plans cannot be approved without submission of these items.

Plan Review
Allow for two weeks for plan review.

The plan review application includes instructions for what must be included for review. Missing information will delay the plan review process.

Mesa County Public Health will notify you within two (2) weeks of receiving your application packet to inform you if your plans were approved or if more information or changes are needed.

• If your plans are approved, your next step to getting your license is to schedule a pre-operational or opening inspection 3-5 business days before the planned opening date.

• If your plans are not approved you will need to submit revised plans. Review of revised plans may take up to 14 additional business days.

Approval of plans does not constitute acceptance of the completed structure. It also does not waive the responsibility of the owner or contractor to make necessary changes that may be required if the facility is not in compliance with the applicable requirements.

Letter of Approval
Construction of the facility may not begin until your plans have been approved by  Mesa County Public Health and any other county or city permits have been obtained.

The letter will include any requirements and stipulations required prior to beginning construction work; be sure to notify others involved in the project, especially the construction manager, of these requirements and stipulations.

All required permits must be obtained before Mesa County Public Health can issue a retail food establishment license.

Planning, Zoning, Building, Fire, and Wastewater must be contacted too to best determine their involvement in your planning and business processes. If you are applying for a liquor license, please contact the local liquor licensing agency.

City of Grand Junction Government

Fruita City Government

DeBeque Town Government

Palisade Town Government

Collbran Town Government

For unincorporated areas of the county including Clifton, Gateway, Loma, Mack and Mesa contact Mesa County Government:

Paperwork and fees can be submitted in the following ways:

Mail completed paperwork plan review and payment (checks may be made out to Mesa County Public Health) to:

Mesa County Public Health
Attn: Environmental Health Program
PO Box 20,000-5033
Grand Junction, CO 81502

In person
Bring the completed applications and paperwork with any applicable fees to our office:

Mesa County Public Health
2nd floor – Birth & Death Certificates
510 29 1/2 Road
Grand Junction, CO 81502

We’re open Monday through Thursday, 8 am- 5:30 pm, and Fridays, 8 am – 12 noon.

Email the completed paperwork to us: You will receive an invoice via email with a link to pay online.

Trying to pay an existing invoice?
Pay online with a credit/debit card at


Licensing Category Current Fee
Restaurant, 0-100 seats $330
Restaurant, 101-200 seats $370
Restaurant, over 200 seats $405
Grocery Stores with Deli, up to 15,000 sq. ft. $325
Grocery Stores with Deli, over 15,000 sq. ft. $620
Grocery Store without Deli, up to 15,000 sq. ft. $170
Grocery Store without Deli, over 15,000 sq. ft. $305
*Limited Retail Food Service $235
*Mobile Unit, Limited Food Service $235
Mobile Unit, Full Service $330
Oil and Gas Food Service Operation $740
*Temporary Events: Limited Food Service $115
**Temporary Events:, Full Service $255

* The Limited Food Service license type may apply to operations like self-service beverages (soda machine) or offering prepackaged foods.
** Other fees may apply to businesses licensed outside of Mesa County

Special Events with Food

Event Coordinators

If coordinating events involving food in Mesa County:

  • Submit a Coordinator Plan Review 30 days prior to event.
  • Provide Vendor Information List at least two weeks prior to event.
  • Provide entry and parking passes the week of the event for inspectors.

All food vendors providing food or beverage at events in Mesa County must be approved by Mesa County Public Health. Please use the above process to ensure your event will be providing food from approved vendors.

Food Vendors

  • All vendors must submit a completed vendor application to Mesa County Public Health each year.
    • Please allow two weeks for processing. Once you are approved you will receive a one-page Mesa County Approval letter which you will provide to each event coordinator.

If you intend to be a food vendor at events coordinated by Mesa County Fairgrounds, the City of Grand Junction, City of Fruita, Fruita Chamber of Commerce, or the Town of Palisade, please see additional vendor application details by clicking here.

Approved Temporary Event Vendors

  • View approved Event Vendors for the current year here.