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Food Code Variances

A variance means a written document issued by Island County that authorizes a modification or waiver of one or more requirements of food code if, in the opinion of Island County, a health hazard or nuisance will not result from the modification or waiver. 

  • Food Code Variance Request Form

Specialized Processing Methods & Operational Plans

Certain specialized processing methods may require an approved variance and/or a Hazard Analysis Critical Control (HACCP) Plan approved in advance by Island County. Certain operations may require an operational plan that is approved in advance by Island County.

Variance, HACCP, and Operational Plan Matrix

ProcessVarianceHACCP PlanOperational PlanFood Code Reference
Smoking Food for PreservationXX03535 (1)
Curing FoodXX03535 (2)
Using a Food Additive for Preservation or to Render a Food a Non-PHF/TCSXX03535 (3)
Cook-Chill ROPXX03535 (4)
Sous Vide ROPXX03535 (4)
2-Barrier (vacuum packaging, modified atmosphere packaging, controlled atmosphere packaging) ROPX03535 (4)
Cheese ROPXX03535 (4)
Fish ROPXX03535 (4)
Molluscan Shellstock TankXX03535 (5)
Custom Processing Animals for Personal UseXXX03535 (6)
Preparing Food by an Alternate MethodXX 03535 (7)
Sprouting of Seeds or BeansXX03535 (8)
Bare Hand Contact with Ready to Eat Food  X03300 (5)
Alternate Cooking Method for Ratites, Mechanically Tenderized & Injected Meats, and Comminuted Fish, Meat, or Game Animals.   X03400 (1) b
Non-Continuous Cooking of Raw Animal Food  X03415
Unattended Cooking & Hot Holding   X03420
Emergency Operating Plan  X08455 (3)


HACCP Plan means a written document that identifies where hazards might occur in the food production process and puts into place stringent actions to prevent hazards from occurring. It details a complete food safety management system following HACCP principles in combination with prerequisite programs. The end objective of an effective HACCP plan is to make the product as safe as possible using a common-sense application of scientific principles to control hazards.

Operational Plan means a written document that outlines a specific process. It may require supporting documents including, but not limited to, scientific challenge studies, validation studies from certified laboratories or processing authorities, monitoring logs, standard operating procedures, equipment specifications, and labeling. 

Sample HACCP Plan Templates