Food Dealer's Permit

All operators of food service establishments within the City of Bellaire are required to have a valid permit issued by the Development Services Department. Required fees are listed on each form. The registration period runs from January 1 through December 31 and MUST be renewed every calendar year.

Permitting Process

To obtain a Food Dealer's Permit, the food establishment will need to turn in the following documents through the SmartGov portal:

  • Completed Food Dealer's Permit Application
  • Copy of a valid State of Texas Sales & Use Permit
  • Proof of Food Manager's Certification(s) (note: a Certified Food Manager MUST be on-duty at all times)
  • Copy of ID for main contact (manager, owner, etc.)

A fee will be charged based upon the type of service of the establishment.

A permit will NOT be issued without all the required documents.

Mobile Units

In addition to the above documents, mobile units need to provide proof of a Mobile Food Permit (medallion) from the City of Houston or a Mobile Food Unit (MFU) Permit from Harris County. Permits from the City of Houston and Harris County must be current and have approved vehicle inspections.

Temporary Permits

Food service establishments wanting to operate in the City of Bellaire for one-time events can apply for a temporary permit through the SmartGov portal. Temporary Food Dealer Permits are issued for no more than a 14-day period and are valid for ONE location only. Temporary permits have the same required documents as the yearly permits and the mobile units (if applicable). 


We accept accredited programs approved by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) or by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). We do not accept the City of Houston's Food Manager Certificate to satisfy the requirements for a City of Bellaire Food Dealer's Permit (FDP). 

Who is a Food Manager?

A food service manager is a person who has demonstrated that they have the knowledge, skills and abilities required to protect the public from foodborne illness by means of successfully completing a certified food manager examination and becoming certified, according to Texas Administrative Code Rule §229.176. The food manager certification is obtained by passing a DSHS or ANSI-CFP approved food manager certification examination. The food manager certification examination may be taken at any accredited examination provider or training program. Certification is valid for five years.

Who must obtain Food Manager training?

Under §228.33(a) At least one employee that has supervisory and management responsibility and the authority to direct and control food preparation and service shall be a certified food protection manager who has shown proficiency of required information through passing a test that is part of an accredited program.

Who is a Food Handler?

A food handler is an individual working with unpackaged food, food equipment or utensils, or food-contact surfaces, according to Texas Food Establishment Rule §228.2(56). The food handler certification is obtained by passing a DSHS or ANSI-CFP approved certification examination. The food handler certification examination may be taken at any accredited examination provider or training program. Certification is valid up to the expiration date listed on the card or certificate. If the card or certificate does not have an expiration date, then the card or certificate is valid for two (2) years from the date of issuance under 25 TAC §229.178 relating to Accreditation of Food Handler Education or Training Programs

Who must obtain Food Handler training?

The Texas Department of State Health Services (TXDSHS), under Texas Food Establishment Rules (TFER) §228.33, requires that ‘…all food employees shall successfully complete an accredited food handler training course, within (60) days of employment.’


Training programs can be completed in person or online. Certificates issued upon the completion of the examinations are valid in Texas. The City of Bellaire does not endorse any course or program but can provide commonly utilized organizations seen to obtain certifications.


Online training is a convenient and accessible way to obtain your certifications. 


Online training isn't ideal for everyone. You can complete a training course in person at a testing site. Test schedules and locations may be obtained by contacting the licensed test site.

To view the full list of accredited programs, click on the ANSI or DSHS directories below.