Food Protection and Inspection

The primary purpose of the food program is to protect the public from food-borne illnesses and assure that food provided for human consumption is wholesome, properly labeled, advertised and produced under conditions which are safe and sanitary. In order to accomplish this purpose the program is divided into three elements.

Retail and Consumer Protection

This portion of the program deals with routine inspections, food-borne illness investigations, and complaint investigations for any facility that provides food to the public. These facilities include restaurants, school cafeterias, grocery stores, mini-marts, lunch trucks, and special events. A copy of the California Retail Food Code (CalCode), the State law that regulates food facilities, and amendments, are available for viewing at the links below. CalCode, effective July 1, 2007, completely replaced the California Uniform Retail Food Facilities Law (CURFFL). CalCode has been modeled after the Federal Food Code, which provides the best available science for achieving the overall goal of preventing food-borne illness. 

Sherman Food, Drug and Cosmetic Law

This law assures that any food is properly labeled and not presented in a misleading way.

Food Facility Plan Check and Construction

Anyone who wishes to build or renovate a restaurant or market must submit plans so that an investigation can be done to assure that the facility will be constructed to the minimum standards of the California Health and Safety Code. Plan check fees must be submitted with a completed Application for Retail Food Facility Plan Review.

View the Retail Food Facility Plan Review page and to view and download the related forms and documents

Merced County Food Inspections

View the results of Merced County inspections of food facilities

More Information


If you have any questions or comments, please contact us at (209) 381-1100 or