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Old 01-30-2008, 10:54 AM   #1
Rag
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Depot kitchen

I have been talking to the PA food safety people about cooking hogs for hire. There are many things to be addressed, but the biggest hurtle for me is a kitchen to be based out of. They call for food prep and cleanup to be done in a licensed kitchen. What have you guys done to meet this.
Some, I know, perform freebie cooks for an American Legion or that type service club with a kitchen.
How or what would you offer to get kitchen privileges to groups like this OR other type kitchens.
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Old 01-30-2008, 11:14 AM   #2
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you may be able to rent some time from a church.
I'd approach a civic organization like a Moose club that
has a kitchen and offer to trade cooks for them to use
their kitchen. You may have to become a Moose though.
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Old 01-30-2008, 11:38 AM   #3
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I had a moose in my backyard last week. I didn't know they had kitchens.
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Old 01-30-2008, 11:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Griff
I had a moose in my backyard last week. I didn't know they had kitchens.
I didn't know they had clubs either.
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Old 01-30-2008, 12:16 PM   #5
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Rag, in Ohio, you can be temporarily licensed for about $35.00. The catch is, you have to be inspected on site, and, you have to prepare all food on site. I would be willing to bet, that out of all folks who do whole hog BBQ, and other BBQ, maybe 10-20% are compliant with local laws. You see, if you have a licensed kitchen, but you are, of course, cooking your hog on site ? Your kitchen is immaterial anyway! Also, you are technically governed by the Board of Health of the County in which you actually do the cooking. Even if you cooked everything in your licensed kitchen, and delivered it to the site, you need a different license designation to "transport" hot and cold food. To make matters even more complex, the laws are "open to interpretation" and that varies from county to county, and even sanitarian to sanitarian( the guy who inspects you!) One county tells me, "you must only be licensed if the guests are being billed a "charge" that includes the meal (like a golf outing or class reunion.) The next county over tells me "if you are charging a ""per plate"" or ""per meal"" cost, then you must be inspected and licensed". This is why I now go the "Personal Chef" route and charge :

Raw Materials
Service Charge (price per hour)
Set-Up fee

This way, the customer is buying the food (through you) and you are supplying a "service" of cooking that food rather than providing "finished meals." Again, every county differs. In one county, you can provide three wash tubs (plastic) to wash rinse and sanitize dishes. Then, they never even ask about the grey water. The next county will require three stainless tubs and a tank to hold grey water. It is a bunch of crap. Be true to yourself. Be VERY CLEAN, and fly under the radar wherever possible! I would call the county in which you live and tell them your plans. The first guy I spoke with three years ago was invaluable in the info he provided. Good Luck! WM
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Old 01-30-2008, 03:57 PM   #6
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Boy oh boy...These HD people really need to get their stories straight. Mine(Ohio) told me the governing HD is the Health Dept.(county) where the business is located. I do not have to get permits to cook up where Dave lives because I would be licensed by my county, which is much more strict than his anyways. The billing is a real sticking point because it always comes down to cost being calculated by # of people. Otherwise, you'd cook the same amount every time. My HD guys were going to consult with the guys in columbus and figure out what was what. I did get into with them over someone charging a fee or whatever to attend or that food is included in your ticket price. That's why I am going to go for the mobile food service operators license which requires sinks, hot water, gray water tank, etc. I just want to be covered and not screw around with you can do this but not this...blah blah blah. Keep in mind that Health Dept.(at least in Ohio) have no jurisdiction over private events at someone's house. Like Dave said, ask questions and run a clean operation and use your head. Also, any transporting of finished product must be transported in an NSF rated device such as a cambro to be legal. Most coolers are not NSF.
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Old 01-30-2008, 04:41 PM   #7
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I think there is a loop hole in all that health goon non-sense if a person passes themselves off as a "Personal Chef." Technically to do this you have to be cooking the customer's food on the customers equipment and at the customer's location. So you draw up a rental contract wheras the customer rents the pit off your wife or cousin etc..buys the pig themselves...then you charge them labor to cook it. It's sorta like "probable cause" in poleece work i.e. just a matter of creative repoat writing. Simple huh?

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Old 01-30-2008, 08:10 PM   #8
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Yea, BW, the PA guy said pers chef will work if you cook customers food, on his kitchen and tools.
PA takes precedence if no local authority is in place.
Even thou I would cook everything on site, they want a depot kitchen to serve as a wash up (utensils) place.
I said to the man, I don't think all the pig cookers I know are doing this. His answer was "we only work Mon thru Fri".
So, under the radar works till some mutt sues because he got a belly ache. Then the insurance carrier says 'all bets off, you weren't licensed'.
Now that would suck.
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:30 PM   #9
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Well thats where you have the lawyer draw up a release of liability where the customer assumes all responsiblity for belly aches..deceased eaters etc. That should work.

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Old 01-30-2008, 08:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigwheel
Well thats where you have the lawyer draw up a release of liability where the customer assumes all responsiblity for belly aches..deceased eaters etc. That should work.

bigwheel
"Deceased eaters". You gotta be sh**ing me.
If the inspectors are off on the weekend and an eater deceases, does that count?
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