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Proposed Placarding Program

Last modified: 12/17/2013 9:06 AM
Update: 12/17/13 - Feasibility Study Completed
Update: 10/21/2013 - Workshop Presentation Added Below
Update: 10/22/2013 - Press Release Added Below
The County of Santa Clara Department of Environmental Health conducted a Feasibility Study for a food service grading and placarding (posting) program.  The goal was to determine the suitability of a grading and placarding system in our community, and what the system should look like.  Some factors that were evaluated:
1. Will it help to reduce foodborne illness?
2. Can a system have a clear, objective grading that will be useful to both consumers and restaurant operators?
3. Suitability of a grading and placarding system to our diverse community and food practices.
4. Cost of a restaurant grading system.
Feasibility Study Completed
The Department of Environmental Health (DEH) has completed the feasibility study for a Restaurant Grading/Placarding Program.  With the assistance of core stakeholders, a restaurant grading/placarding system modeled on Sacramento County’s Green-Yellow-Red grading system was selected.  The Sacramento County Model emphasizes critical risk factors of food-borne illness, poses a lower cost to businesses, and is easy for the public to understand. Minor violations that do not pose an imminent health hazard will be addressed using the Department’s existing protocols.
In order to inform food operators and the public about the proposal, DEH issued press releases and conducted interviews in English, Spanish, Korean, Chinese, and Vietnamese.  Newspaper articles, as well as television and radio news reports announced the placarding proposal and where restaurant operators and the public could find more information. During October, seventeen food operator workshops and three public meetings were conducted. Over 100 people attended these meetings.
The Board of Supervisors favors a Restaurant Grading/Placarding System which includes putting colored placards at restaurants and posting detailed inspection results with numerical scores online. DEH is developing an implementation schedule for the program and will present the final proposal to the Board of Supervisors early next year.
Please click here to see the final Advisory Group presentation.