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Retail Food Facilities & Restaurants

Retail Food Facility Licenses are issued to:

  • Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Food Auctions, Grocery Stores, Convenient Store, Beer Distributors, Schools, Caterers and similar public food facilities where food is sold or served directly to a consumer from a physical location or facility. 

  • All retailers are required to obtain a Retail Food Facility License PRIOR to operating a Retail Food Facility. This includes new facilities and change of ownerships for existing businesses. Licenses are non-transferable to another proprietor, new facility or location.

How to Apply:

  • SEE FORMS (on right) - download, print and submit Application Packet – Retail Food Facilities and Restaurants
  • Submit application via mail or fax to the appropriate Regional Office as listed on the cover letter of the application
  • Do not send money with this application
  • Allow 4-6 weeks for processing  

If Approved:

  • A inspector will schedule an on-site inspection of the facility

  • Upon a compliant inspection, your license fee will be collected and a Retail Food Facility License issued

If not Approved:

  • You will be sent a letter describing why the plans were not approved.  Applicants are encouraged to re-submit the plans again with the corrected or requested information.

If inspection is not passed:

  • You will be provided with an inspection report stating your deficiencies.  When deficiencies are corrected, you can contact your inspector to request another inspection.

Change of Ownership – New owners MUST submit “Application Packet for Retail Food Facilities and Restaurants”. Follow the instructions for Change of Ownership.

Remodeling or Significant Menu Change – Currently licensed facilities MUST submit a plan review “Application Packet for Retail Food Facilities and Restaurants” to the Department prior to any remodeling or significant changes.  There is no fee for the plan review application process.  

Renewal of Licenses – Renewal of licenses occurs annually with notification to proprietors approximately 45 days prior to the current expiration date.  If you do not receive a renewal application, contact the department licensing clerks at 717-787-4315.

Lost/Duplicate License – Contact the department licensing clerks at 717-787-4315.


NEW retail food facility


NEW under 50 seats AND owner operated


Change of ownership


Annual renewals


Courtesy inspections


2nd follow-up inspection


3rd follow-up inspection


Duplicate license fee


Make checks payable to “Commonwealth of Pennsylvania”