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New Food Code, Green To Go Exemptions, Staple Food Changes

Thursday, January 10, 2019 4:52 PM | Junia Joseph-Benham (Administrator)

Top 20 Food Code Changes for Businesses 

Minnesota’s new Food Code. What do you need to know?

Minnesota has a new Food Code as of January 1, 2019. 

Business owners, managers and food workers can learn about important changes in the Food Code by visiting the 2019 Major Food Code Changes webpage. The information is also listed in the flyer Top 20 Food Code changes for businesses.

The items are divided into two categories: Need to know and Need action. Each item has a brief description of the change.

More information about each item is in 20 Questions: The Proposed Major Changes of Concern to the Minnesota Food Code from the Minnesota Department of Health.

There are many more changes in the new Food Code than what are listed on the flyer. Find information about these items, or other items, at Minnesota Food Code (PDF).

Watch for information about meetings with Minneapolis Health Department staff on the new Food Code.

Contact your health inspector if you have questions about any of the Food Code changes.

Green To Go exemptions end April 22

The Green To Go ordinance requires an annual review of products exempted from the ordinance.

The Minneapolis Health Department is holding a public meeting to discuss Green To Go product exemptions and to take public comments.

Early in 2018, the Health Department made the determination the Green To Go product exemptions would end on April 22, 2019. 

After April 22, 2019, these products will no longer be exempt:

  • Polyethylene (PE) lined paper hot and cold cups and containers for liquids (soup, etc.).
  • Rigid polystyrene lids for those containers. The containers are marked with a #6 inside three chasing arrows.

The public meeting is: 
Monday, January 28 
9 to 11 a.m. 
Eastside Neighborhood Services 
1700 2nd Street NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413

If you cannot attend the public meeting, email or mail your comments to the Health Department.

Email comments to or mail them to: 
Minneapolis Health Department 
Attn: Dan Huff 
250 South 4th Street, Room 510 
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Submit comments by January 31, 2019.

The Green To Go ordinance requires food and beverages prepared for immediate consumption and to-go must be placed in packaging that is reusable, recyclable, or compostable. In addition, recyclable materials must be recycled. Compostable plastics must be composted.

Staple food changes

Do you own or manage a grocery store in Minneapolis?

On December 7, 2018, Minneapolis made changes to the staple foods ordinance (Title 10: Chapter 203 of the City code). This local law requires grocery stores to stock a certain amount and variety of staple foods, like fresh produce and whole grains. The changes will make it easier for stores to stock staple foods that match their customers’ cultures and food traditions.

What do you need to know?

There are now six staple food categories instead of ten. Eggs, cheese, whole grain cereal, and canned beans have been combined with other similar categories. Stores do not have to stock as many items as before and more items count as staple foods. In early 2019, stores will receive a letter with information about the changes. The Minneapolis Health Department will offer trainings and other support to help store owners comply with the updated ordinance.

Please visit the staple foods website for more information.

Contact Kristen Klingler at 612-673-2910 if you have questions.

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