2012 Florida Statutes
500.121 Disciplinary procedures.—
(1) In addition to the suspension procedures provided in s. 500.12, if applicable, the department may impose a fine not to exceed $5,000 against any retail food store, food establishment, or cottage food operation that violates this chapter, which fine, when imposed and paid, shall be deposited by the department into the General Inspection Trust Fund. The department may revoke or suspend the permit of any such retail food store or food establishment if it is satisfied that the retail food store or food establishment has:
(a) Violated any of the provisions of this chapter.
(b) Violated or aided or abetted in the violation of any law of this state governing or applicable to retail food stores or food establishments or any lawful rules of the department.
(c) Knowingly committed, or been a party to, any material fraud, misrepresentation, conspiracy, collusion, trick, scheme, or device whereby any other person, lawfully relying upon the word, representation, or conduct of a retail food store or food establishment, acts to her or his injury or damage.
(d) Committed any act or conduct of the same or different character than that enumerated which constitutes fraudulent or dishonest dealing.
(2) Any manufacturer, processor, packer, or distributor who misrepresents or mislabels the country of origin of any food may, in addition to any penalty provided in this chapter, be subject to an additional administrative fine of up to $10,000 per violation.
(3) Any administrative order made and entered by the department imposing a fine pursuant to this section shall specify the amount of the fine and the time limit for payment thereof, not exceeding 15 days, and, upon failure of the permitholder to pay the fine within that time, the permit is subject to suspension.
(4) In any court proceeding relating to administrative orders, the burden of proving violations of this chapter and of upholding administrative orders is with the department.
(5) The department shall post a prominent closed-for-operation sign on any food establishment that has had its permit suspended or revoked. The department shall also post such a sign on any establishment judicially or administratively determined to be operating without a permit. It is a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, for any person to deface or remove such closed-for-operation sign or for any food establishment to open for operation without a permit or to open for operation while its permit is suspended or revoked. The department may impose administrative sanctions for violations of this subsection.
(6) If the department determines that a food offered in a food establishment is labeled with nutrient claims that are in violation of this chapter, the department shall retest or reexamine the product within 90 days after notification to the manufacturer and to the firm at which the product was collected. If the product is again found in violation, the department shall test or examine the product for a third time within 60 days after the second notification. The product manufacturer shall reimburse the department for the cost of the third test or examination. If the product is found in violation for a third time, the department shall exercise its authority under s. 500.172 and issue a stop-sale or stop-use order. The department may impose additional sanctions for violations of this subsection.
History.—s. 1, ch. 72-73; s. 6, ch. 78-95; s. 2, ch. 81-318; ss. 12, 39, ch. 82-225; ss. 2, 3, 4, ch. 83-8; s. 9, ch. 87-388; s. 102, ch. 92-291; s. 10, ch. 94-180; s. 604, ch. 97-103; s. 20, ch. 97-220; s. 1, ch. 98-13; ss. 5, 14, ch. 98-396; s. 1, ch. 2002-85; s. 26, ch. 2002-295; s. 20, ch. 2011-205.