There will be notably less inspections at Iowa eateries from now on.

Starting November 9th, the Iowa Capital Dispatch reports that the state of Iowa will do onsite inspections of restaurants every five years instead of the current three years.

It's important to note that there will still be inspections after complaints about a restaurant or if there are problems with the ownership. But the routine inspections are the ones affected by the change.

CEO of the consumer advocacy group Stop Foodborne Illness Mitzi Baum told Iowa Capital Dispatch:

This is the antithesis of consumer-focused public policy. Five years is such a prolonged period of time without having an inspection. The increased risk to public health is exponential … Three years is inadequate, let alone five years.

The rule is in effect for not only restaurants, but everywhere that serves food, including delis, grocery stores, and sushi bars.

This isn't something that the Iowa Restaurant Association actively worked for. Jessica Dunker of the Iowa Restaurant Association said:

That wasn’t something that came at the request of the restaurants across the state, but I am not uncomfortable with it. We do like to see the emphasis focused on complaints … I believe we have other protections in place.


The Five Years Is Significantly Less Inspections Than Other States

In Illinois, the Iowa Capital Dispatch says that the state will inspect high-risk restaurants three times per year, medium-risk restaurants once a year, and low-risk restaurants every two years.

FDA recommends that restaurants should be inspected every six months with exceptions for those who have "approved hazard-analysis plans" in place.

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