LA county text County Directory of Information & Services | Public Alerts | Public Information | County Contact Information

County of Los Angeles Public Health Logo



Environmental Health
Public Health EH Building

   

Tell Us How We're Doing
File a complaint
To report public health issues.
Call the Customer Call Center at:

(888) 700-9995

Telephone agents are available on Monday - Friday, 8:00AM - 5:00PM
Or visit our Environmental Health Online Complaint System
How to Find Us
County of Los Angeles
Department of Public Health
Environmental Health
5050 Commerce Drive
Baldwin Park, CA 91706
(888) 700-9995



get adobe reader image

Adobe Reader
Note: PDF documents on this site were created using Adobe Acrobat 5.0 or later. If you are using an earlier version of Adobe Acrobat Reader (4.x or less), document functionality may be reduced. Please Click Here

Health Advisories
Raw Seed Sprout Storage and Handling

The purpose of this advisory is to provide proper storage and handling guidelines for retail food facility operators, and to prevent foodborne illness associated with the consumption of raw seed sprouts.

The State of California, Department of Public Health recognizes raw seed sprouts to be a potentially hazardous food. Raw seed sprouts have been shown to support the rapid and progressive growth of infectious microorganisms such as Salmonella spp. and Escherichia coli 0157:H7. Since 1995, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also recognized raw seed sprouts as a source of foodborne illness in the United States. In addition, the FDA has listed raw seed sprouts as a “Potentially Hazardous Food” in the 1999 Federal Model Food Code.

Alfalfa sprouts, the most common form of raw seed sprouts available in the market place, have been the cause of most reported sprout-related foodborne illness outbreaks. Other types of sprouts that have also been implicated in reported sprout-related foodborne illness outbreaks are radish sprouts, clover sprouts, and mung bean sprouts. In most reported sprout-related outbreaks, the likely source of contamination was the seed. However, unsafe food practices have also contributed to the contamination of sprouts.

In order to minimize the contamination of sprouts due to unsafe food practices, retail food facility operators handling, storing or serving raw seed sprouts shall comply with the following guidelines:

  1. Raw seed sprouts shall be held under refrigeration at a temperature not to exceed 41 °F.
  2. All operators handling raw seed sprouts shall employ good personal hygiene practices. Examples of good personal hygiene are:
    1. Hands shall be washed with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds before and after handling sprouts.
    2. Employees with open cuts, wounds or sores shall not handle sprouts unless the wound is bandaged and the hand is properly gloved.
    3. Employees shall wear clean, outer garments, and hair restraints.
  3. Ensure that raw seed sprouts are crisp-looking with buds attached. Remove all musty smelling, dark, or slimy-looking sprouts at once.
  4. To minimize bacterial growth, raw seed sprouts should not be held in a display case equipped with automatic misters. Sprouts should be stored in a clean and dry environment.
  5. All packaged raw seed sprouts must be labeled “Perishable- keep refrigerated”. The label must also contain the following information: common name, net weight, or numerical count; name and place of business where manufactured.
For additional information, please contact your local Environmental Health Office or call the number listed below.

Los Angeles County Environmental Health
5050 Commerce Drive
Baldwin Park, CA 91706
(626) 430-5200

Pay for your Public Health
Permit or License
To pay for your Public Health Permit and/or License with a Visa, Mastercard, American Express, or Discover card, please click here .

A 2.25% convenience fee per transaction will apply. Please have your Account ID and your Facility ID numbers from your billing statement ready. Payment will only be accepted online for the total amount owed on an account. Terms and Conditions apply. For more information about Permit and License Billing, please click here .
Areas of Interest
Popular Links
arrow 2013-2014 License/Permit Fees pdf icon

arrow Beware: Health Inspector Imposters pdf icon

arrow Body Art

arrow Booklets/Guides:

arrow Certified Food Handler & Manager:

arrow Community Events

arrow Cottage Food Operation

arrow Drinking Water Report

arrow Facility Ratings

arrow Facility Closures last three months

arrow Food Recalls 

arrow All Recalls on 2015:

arrow Guidelines for Safe Food Donation pdf icon

arrow Inspect Your Home Kitchen

arrow Mobile Food Facility Route Sheet pdf icon

arrow Motion Picture Catering Operation Permit

arrow Pet Dogs in Outdoor Dining Areas pdf icon

arrow Plan Check Guides:

arrow Radiation:

arrow Swimming Pool Inspection Details

arrow Swimming Pool Closure List

arrow What to Expect as a Food Operator pdf icon
Director of Environmental Health
Angelo J. Bellomo
Director's Biography
 
Los Angeles County Seal: Enriching lives through effective and caring services