Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Food Safety

What is the purpose of the division?

The Division of Food Safety is directly responsible for assuring the public of a safe, wholesome and properly represented food supply.  This is accomplished through the permitting and inspection food establishments; inspection and evaluation of food products; and the performance of biological and chemical laboratory testing on a variety of food products sold and/or produced in Florida. The division monitors food from manufacturing and distribution to retail. The division also administers and enforces the food and poultry and egg laws, along with supporting the enforcement of other food safety laws. Consumer complaints related to food are also evaluated by the division.

What types of services does the division provide?

  • Inspections. The division conducts inspections of various food and dairy establishments to minimize the risk of foodborne illness in food and dairy products processed, produced, stored, distributed and sold in both retail and wholesale food businesses throughout Florida.
  • Laboratory Services. The division houses biological and chemical testing laboratories to help ensure Florida consumers have the safest possible food products available.  The chemical laboratories test for a variety of chemical containments, such as heavy metals and pesticides in food products. The biological laboratories test for a variety of biological pathogens and harmful organisms in both food and dairy products, in addition to analyzing samples collected from environments where food and dairy products are processed and handled.
  • Food Emergency Response. The division also plays a role in the state's emergency response network. Specifically, the division has dedicated staff connected to the State Emergency Response Team through Emergency Response Function (ESF)-17.

What is the compliance rate of food and dairy establishments?

In Fiscal Year 2018-19, 94% of food establishments received a "met expectations" rating. Additionally, 94% of dairy establishments were deemed in compliance.

 

How are these activities funded?

Fiscal Year: 2020-21
Title Fund Dollars Positions
PROGRAM: FOOD SAFETY AND QUALITY
FOOD SAFETY INSPECTION AND ENFORCEMENT
25,316,648
319.00
TOTAL
25,316,648
319.00

Updates

Hemp Labeling Requirements and Restrictions. The 2020 Legislature enacted Chapter 2020-135, Laws of Florida, which amends the definition for the term "hemp extract" to clarify that it does not include synthetic CBD or seeds or seed-derived ingredients that are generally recognized as safe by the United States Food and Drug Administration. The bill also removes from the label the statement that the product does not contain more than 0.3 percent THC on a dry-weight basis, and provides that hemp extract sold or distributed in the state in violation of the hemp labeling requirements is considered adulterated or misbranded. Additionally, the bill prohibits the sale of products that contain hemp extract intended for inhalation to persons under 21 years of age.

Where can I find related OPPAGA reports?

A complete list of related OPPAGA reports is available on our website.

Where can I get more information?

What are the applicable statutes?

Title XXXV and Chs500, 501, 502, 531, 583, 586, and 597, Florida Statutes.

Whom do I contact for help?

Division of Food Safety, Director Dr. Matthew Curran, 850-245-5520

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