Food safety

Food safety materials and resources for you to use in your business.

Food Safety

We provide food safety videos, checklists, posters, logs and other materials for you to use in your business.

Food safety videos

Food safety videos educate viewers about commercial kitchen food safety. The videos, produced by the City of Minneapolis Health Department, are for staff and managers of commercial kitchens. 

Video titles are Be Your Own Food Safety Inspector, Times and Temperatures, Safe Facilities and Equipment, Employee Health and Hygiene and Protection from Contamination.

Food safety inspection video pages by language:

Food Safety Videos

  1. English
  2. Spanish
  3. Somali
  4. Hmong
  5. Vietnamese
  6. Chinese

Time as a Public Health Control

Non-continuous cooking

Self-inspection checklists and temperature logs

Self-inspections and logging temperatures create internal peer to peer learning, strengthen training efforts by the person in charge, change facility standards and make businesses safer and more successful. Materials are available in multiple languages.

Employee illness

Infected food workers present a severe food safety risk.

The person in charge is required to notify the local health department or the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) if any food employees are known to be infected with

  • Another bacterial, viral or parasitic pathogen.
  • Norovirus
  • Hepatitis A virus
  • Shiga toxin-producing E. coli
  • Shigella
  • Salmonella

Employee illness resources

Germ buster

This poster shows the six steps to cleaner hands.

Visit the MN Department of Health website for posters in Somali, Arabic, Bengali, Cambodian, Chinese, Hindi, Korean, Nepalese, Russian, Turkish, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese.

Conscious choking poster 

Food protection set

This picture guide and poster set can be paired with the self-inspection checklist and temperature logs above. It can be especially useful for staff training where language or literacy barriers exist.

Food safety posters

Date marking

Keep hot foods hot

Keep cold Foods cold 

No Bare hand contact



Cooking temperatures



Service animals in food businesses

Are service animals allowed in food businesses? Are emotional support animals allowed in food businesses? Find answers in:

Foodborne illness risks

Minimize your risk of foodborne illness. Review your business's food handling practices.

The five main risk factors for foodborne illnesses are:

  • Improper hot and cold holding of food
  • Not cooking foods to proper temperatures
  • Cross-contaminating food
  • Poor personal hygiene
  • Purchasing food from unsafe sources

To reduce foodborne illness risks:

  • Keep cold foods below 41 degrees.
  • Keep hot foods above 135 degrees. When holding hot foods, check the temperature every two hours. Reheat if needed to maintain a safe holding temperature.
  • Prep raw meat, poultry, seafood and ready to eat ingredients separately. Use separate cutting boards, equipment and utensils or clean and sanitize all equipment and utensils after working with each ingredient.
  • Anyone handling food should practice good personal hygiene. This includes proper handwashing and avoiding bare hand contact with ready to eat foods.
  • Purchase food from approved, reputable suppliers. Know your suppliers and their food safety practices.

For more food safety information visit the Minnesota Department of Health website.


Norovirus flyer
Norvirus flyer - Spanish

Norovirus information

  • Norovirus infection is the leading cause of foodborne illness.
  • Norovirus is very contagious. Protect your patrons, employees and yourself with proper handwashing.
  • The most effective way to prevent the spread of norovirus is to wash your hands with warm soapy water for 20 seconds:
    • Before working with food.
    • After handling raw animal products.
    • After using the bathroom.
    • After any activity that contaminates the hands.
    • Wash your hands more often when someone in your household is sick.


  • When you are sick with vomiting or diarrhea, do not work in a food establishment. Avoid preparing food while you have symptoms and for at least three days after you recover.
  • No bare hand contact with ready-to-eat food including garnishes and ice.
  • Practice proper glove use.

If a sick customer or employee vomits or has diarrhea in your establishment:

  • Clean up vomit and diarrhea right away. Wear protective clothing, gloves and mask. Use absorbent material to soak up liquids. Do not vacuum. Wash surfaces that contacted vomit or diarrhea with soapy water.
  • Disinfect surfaces with a chlorine bleach solution.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Hand sanitizers may not be effective against norovirus


Improper thawing of vacuum packed (Reduced Oxygen packaging - ROP) frozen fish is a breeding ground for botulism. The correct way to thaw frozen (ROP) fish is:

  • Cut or peel open the packaging. This step is critical. Botulism spores can form if the packaging is not opened.
  • Thaw in the refrigerator, under cool running water, or as part of the cooking process.

Health Inspectors are seeing frozen vacuum packed fish thawing in unopened packaging.

Vibrio bacteria

A healthy person who is exposed to Vibrio may experience vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain. People with compromised immune systems and pregnant women are at much greater risk.

Are you prepared if any of your customers become ill with Vibrio? Does your menu have the correct Consumer Warning? Are shellstock tags kept with the containers? After an oyster container is emptied, are tags kept for 90 days, and filed according to date?

Health Inspectors are seeing establishments that do not properly keep shellstock tags and records as required by the MN Food code.

Find vibrio information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Ingredient and allergen labeling

Ingredient lists and food labeling are important to customers who must avoid a specific ingredient for medical or religious reasons. MN Food Code requires businesses to provide customers with information on ingredients and allergens on all foods served.

This includes:

  • Keep the ingredient list from the label of food items purchased in a package, bag, box, can or bottle. Examples: packaged buns from a bakery, boxed pasta, prepared sauces, etc.
  • Keep recipes in a centralized location to be able to answer ingredient and allergen questions from your customers.
  • Properly label all food items prepared and packaged by your restaurant that are available for self-service. Food is packaged if the food business bottles, cans, cartons, wraps or bags the product and makes it available for self-service.


The label on a food package tells consumers exactly what is inside the package. Food package label information must be written in English. There are five parts of a food label:

  1. Identity (name of food).
  2. Net Quantity of Contents.
  3. Ingredient List, including Major Food Allergens* (List all ingredients by their common or usual name)
    • List all ingredients in descending order (most to least) by weight. If less than 2% by weight, an ingredient can be mentioned at the end of the list, stating “contains 2% or less of ____.”
    • Include all sub-ingredients. Example: Flour (bleached wheat flour, malt barley, flour, niacin, iron, potassium thiamine, riboflavin).
    • Include chemical preservatives and food coloring in descending order (most to least) by weight.
  4. Business Name and Address
  5. Nutrition Facts

Major food allergens

Allergen labeling is required for packaged food products that contain any of the eight major food allergens:

  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Crustacean shellfish
  • Tree nuts
  • Peanuts
  • Wheat
  • Soy

Identify by name any major food allergens in the product, as part of the ingredient list. This must include protein derived from a major food allergen.

Use one of the following options:

  • List the common or usual name of the food source, followed by the name of the allergen in parentheses. Example: flour (wheat), whey (milk).
  • After the ingredient list, place the word “Contains:” followed by the food allergen. Example: Contains: wheat, milk.

For tree nuts, declare the specific type of nut. Examples: almonds, coconut, pecans. For fish or crustacean shellfish, declare the species. Examples: walleye, shrimp, lobster.

The Minnesota Department of Health has more information on labeling food.  

Food Labeling for Retail Food Establishment

Request accessible format

If you need help with this information, please email 311, or call 311 or 612-673-3000.

Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.

Contact us

Health Department

Environmental Health




Public Service Center
505 Fourth Ave S, Room 520
Minneapolis, MN 55415