Food License, Safety & Inspection

Tips for Food Establishments

Governor Reynolds Announces Dubuque Restaurants May Reopen on Friday, May 15 at 5 a.m.  Click here for information and requirements.

The City of Dubuque Health Services Department offers guidance for food establishments and grocery stores to protect their employees and the public.  Click here to download a PDF with information and guidance.

Click here to view a document from the Iowa Department of Public Health and Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals (released 3/17/20) listing recommended actions for establishments that are open for limited service.

COVID-19 prevention, screening, and FAQs from ServSafe - National Restaurant Association

More information on COVID-19 is available here.

Responsibilities & Services

The City of Dubuque Health Services Department contracts with the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals to inspect and license restaurants, taverns, temporary food stands, mobile food stands, grocery stores, bakeries, etc. and to inspect hotels, motels, bed and breakfast inns, and vending machines.  Enforcement follows the 2013 Food Code.

**See a summary of the 2013 Food Code changes HERE!**

New or Proposed Food Establishments

The food establishment owner must complete a Food License Application and provide blueprints/plans for the establishment and submit payment before approval of any new establishment is given or a new license is issued.

How do I open a restaurant?

How do I open a mobile food unit/pushcart?

How do I host a temporary food event?

Other Food License/Permit Applications

For  temporary food events with more than 10 temporary food vendors (not including mobile food units or Farmers Market), the event organizer needs to submit and Event Application at least 60 days prior to the event.

Certified Food Protection Manager Courses

Food establishments are required to have a Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM). Course offerings to fulfill this requirement include:

  • Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
    Online schedule
  • Northeast Iowa Community College
    Please call 563-557-8271 ext 380 to register. Online schedule
  • Iowa Food Safety Task Force
    Click here to access the Iowa Food Safety Task Force website for more resources and information about food licenses. 

Food Inspections App

View food establishment inspection reports from across Iowa with the Food Safety app. Available through Google Play and the App Store.

Seasonal Food Safety Information