Baton Rouge – The Department of Health and Hospitals’ Office of Public Health, Sanitarian Services staff will continue to inspect food establishments in Orleans Parish, allowing those that are approved to resume operations and serve customers.

 Dr. Jimmy Guidry, State Health Officer, announced today that as safe water and power services have returned to some areas of Orleans Parish, owners and operators of food establishments wishing to reopen their businesses are reminded to call the parish health unit at 504-838-5140 for a reopening inspection to ensure the conditions for safe food preparation and storage are in place.

 As of Monday, Oct. 10, sanitarians working in the affected area had inspected and approved 174 retail food establishments to reopen in Orleans Parish.

 To meet the requirements for reopening, the food facility must at a minimum have previously held a valid, LDH-issued Retail Food Permit to Operate, a safe means of obtaining food, safe water supply, properly operated sewage disposal, garbage removal, the ability to maintain food at proper temperatures and to have cold-holding equipment such as refrigerators or freezers operating at proper temperatures.

 Once the restaurant is inspected and approved by health officials, an official placard will be conspicuously displayed at that establishment, indicating the restaurant has been inspected and is approved for reopening.  Food establishments that do not display the placard have not been inspected by the state health department to reopen following Hurricane Katrina.