Foodservice Equipment Reports

Letter Grades Likely For Baltimore

Word spreads fast in the age of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Information about a restaurant’s menu and its latest health-department inspection moves quickly, and a good word is critical to success. Following the lead of other major cities, including Dallas, Los Angeles and New York, Baltimore is heading down the path of transparency.

The city council is considering requiring restaurants and foodservice operations to post letter grades. A bill introduced Aug. 13 would mandate foodservice facilities, including restaurants, bars and food trucks, to post their health-department inspection letter grade in a visible area for customers.

The bill also would require the Baltimore City Health Department to post the grades online. Local facilities are inspected by the department a few times a year. High-risk food establishments are inspected every four months while medium- to low-risk establishments are inspected every six months.

Currently, Baltimore’s health-department website posts the names of restaurants that have been shut down for not meeting code standards. Residents can log onto the site mid-month to receive updates.

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