Permit needed for temporary food stands

Staff report

DARKE COUNTY — Summer is a time to get out and enjoy the weather with some good food! The Darke County Health Department is here to help answer any questions you have related to setting up a temporary food stand. A temporary food service operation is defined as any place that prepares and/or serves food for a charge or required donation at an event for a period of no longer than five consecutive days. The 2022 fee for a temporary event is $31.45 per day of the event. A person or organization may apply for up to ten temporary licenses per year.

The temporary packet and application are available in our office or on our website at www.darkecountyhealth.org. A temporary food permit is required to be taken out if there is a charge for the food and there is no exemption that can be applied. Exemptions include a stand operated on the premises of a private home by one or more children under the age of twelve, if the food served is not potentially hazardous, such as a lemonade stand. Other exemptions are a church, school, fraternal or veteran’s organization, volunteer fire or emergency medical service organizations that prepare or serve food intended for individual portions on its premises for not more than seven consecutive days or not more than fifty-two separated days during the licensing period.

A permit is also needed when a licensed facility or mobile unit donates food which is then sold by another non-exempt organization. You do not need a temporary food license if you are donation only and no amount of donation is specified, required, or suggested. We would still encourage you to review the temporary food packet to be sure you are handling food safely. The Darke County Health Department will be at the event to inspect prior to any food being served. Just a few of the items we check are knowledge of cooking and holding temperatures, handwashing station, proper glove use, and equipment and surfaces are clean and able to be sanitized. We will issue a permit at that time. Applications for food temporaries need to be submitted to the Health Department no later than 14 days prior to the intended event start date. This allows for time to schedule staff as these events are typically in the evening or on the weekends. This also give us time to process paperwork and help to answer any questions the applicants may have. Applicants should thoroughly review the application packet prior to the event. Licenses will not be issued if outstanding violations exist, so make sure you have everything required.

For any questions or additional information on temporary food permits, please contact the Health Department at 937-548-4196 ext. 206, Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Friday 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.