food cartRetail Food Establishment Licensing Process

To alleviate some of the financial burden on our licensed establishments due to COVID-19, we have reverted our license fees back to 2019 rates.

All food and drink licensing fees and application processing in Madison and Dane County are handled by the City of Madison Clerk's Office. See a timeline of the 2022 License Renewal Process: English / Español / 繁體中文

  1. Complete the Food and Drink Licensing Application.
  2. Look Up the Licensing Fees.*
  3. Submit application and fee to the City Clerk's Office address, listed on the application.
  4. For new or remodeled establishments, send a copy of the kitchen plans to: Environmental Health Division, 2300 S. Park St. Suite 2010, Madison, WI, 53713 or email
  5. You will get your license after your application and fee are processed and we do a pre-inspection.
  6. For questions or to schedule a pre-inspection, call us at (608) 242-6515 or email

Information for People who Want to Open a Food Establishment: English / Español / 繁體中文

*Licensing Fees

A licensing fee is paid to get an annual food and drink license. The fee is based on anticipated gross annual food sales and food handling complexity. There is also a one-time pre-inspection fee which covers:

  • The cost of reviewing plans.
  • Consulting with a Sanitarian on equipment installation and proper design and construction of the facility.
  • On-site evaluation of the facility prior to issuing the permit.

Call (608) 242-6515 or email for more information.

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