Food Permits

Jefferson County requires that all food establishments in our jurisdiction have a current Food Permit. Our jurisdiction includes all of unincorporated Jefferson County as well as:
  • Bevil Oaks
  • China
  • Groves
  • Nederland
  • Port Neches

We follow the Texas Food Establishment Rules or (TFER) that can be found here:

Health Inspections

We inspect food service establishments, day cares, schools, grocery stores, hospitals, mobile food units, and temporary food events to insure compliance with state and local health laws and regulations. These establishments are inspected a minimum of one (1) time per year. All establishments receiving complaints are inspected as soon as possible.

Food complaints

If you have had a bad experience with a particular establishment, please contact us so that we may investigate it further.

*Updates/Changes to TFER (Texas Food Establishment Rules)

On November 30, 2015 Jefferson County Commissioner Court updated their Order to the 2015 TFER (Texas Food Establishment Rules). This means that all food establishments will be required to follow all changes and updates associated with new TFER.

Here are some of the changes that need to be done before your next health inspection:

  1. Beginning September 1, 2016, all food employees will be required to hold a Food Handlers certification within (60) days of employment. Here is a website of vendors that offer online certification:

  2. Each permitted food establishment must employ at least one Certified Food Manager. Certification must be obtained by passing an examination approved by the Texas Department of State Health Services. The original certificate must be posted in a location in your food establishment that is conspicuous to your customers. If you wish to obtain this certification online you can do so at the following web address:

    The following food establishments are exempt from employing a Certified Food Manager:
    • Establishments that handle only prepackaged food and do not prepare or package food;
    • Establishments that do not prepare or handle exposed potentially hazardous foods;
    • Nonprofit organizations as defined in 25 TAC ยง229.371(9).

  3. You will need to post your "Food Service Permit" and either post your newest Health Inspection Report or a sign that states that a copy of the inspection report is available upon request. Both must be in a location in your food establishment that is conspicuous to your customer

  4. First Aid Kits will now be required and inspected. They must be labeled and stored in a location to prevent the contamination of food, equipment, utensils, linens and single-service and single-use articles.

  5. Hand washing sink signage requirements: A sign or poster that notifies your food employees to wash their hands shall be provided at all hand washing sinks used by your food employees and shall be clearly visible.

There are several documents to help you with the transition to the new TFER guidelines, they can be located at: