Home » Departments » Health » Environmental Health Services » Food Protection » Food Protection FAQ?s

Food Protection FAQ's

1.  How do I start a food service business or open a restaurant? 

Refer to The Requirements for New Food Establishments.

2.  Where can I find the restaurant code & rules?

N.J.A.C. 8:24, Chapter 24, Sanitation in Retail Food Establishments and Food and Beverage Vending Machines can be found here


3.  Can I run a food business out of my home?

No, NJ state law prohibits food service operations in private residences (family child care homes and bed and breakfast guesthouses are exempt from the regulations).  A food establishment business must operate out of an approved and licensed kitchen.


4.  How do I start a cookie or cake business?

Your product must be produced in an approved and licensed food establishment kitchen.  Food may not be produced in a private home.  One option is to rent out space in an approved kitchen.  Refer to The Requirements for New Food Establishments.


5.  Do I need a permit to serve food at a special event?

Yes, permits are required whenever food is served to the public.  You will need to complete a Temporary Food Application for Vendors.  Applications need to be submitted at least 10 working days prior to the event.  Refer to Individual Temporary Food Stands Requirements to Operate.


6.  I plan to buy a restaurant that is currently in operation.  What do I need to do?

You must contact our department prior to the change in ownership; apply for a new food service license; fill out a Denville Plan Review Application and pay a review fee if you are making any changes to the layout/equipment; and schedule a change of ownership inspection.  The inspection must be completed before a new license to operate will be issued.  All establishments changing ownership must be brought up to code.


7.  What is the minimum equipment needed for a food establishment?

This is a difficult question because each establishment needs to be individually evaluated based upon the food served and the types of food preparation processes involved.  In general, the absolute minimum equipment needed for a food establishment is a hand wash sink in the preparation area, a two or usually three compartment sink depending on the preparation processes, a mop sink, and a prep or produce sink if produce is to be washed or other food is to be prepared in a sink.  Refer to Construction Guidelines for additional requirements.


8.  What do I do if I think I became sick from eating at a restaurant in Denville?

First, contact your health provider and ask for a stool culture.  Second, contact the health department at 973-625-8300, extension 261.  You will be asked to provide a 72 hour food history in order to identify other possible sources of infection.  Very often a person will want to blame the last restaurant that they ate at only an hour before their symptoms begin.  It is extremely unlikely that this restaurant is the culprit because most foodborne illnesses require at least four hours to develop in the body before they start causing symptoms.  The incubation period can be as much as 48 hours or longer.