Do you have to be licensed to do private parties - BBQ Central

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Old 03-05-2011, 07:13 PM   #1
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Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

I am wanting to start a small catering service with my trailer and cant seem to find out if I need a food establishment license or not to do it. If I only cater private parties is it neccesary to have a licensed kitchen to do it? I am in iowa usa
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Old 03-05-2011, 11:52 PM   #2
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Ask a local lawyer.
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:35 AM   #3
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Call your local health department.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:32 AM   #4
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

If you stick to friends and word of mouth, doing small gigs especially in non public places you should be ok. The only way you would get in hot water that way, is if a pampas health inspector happened to be at the gig you were serving at. Since you are not licensed and or bonded make sure you cook to proper temps and use extreme measures to keep your food safe. (a Thermopen is a must) For example after each turn of chicken, I spray my tongs with vinegar wipe than spray them with vinegar again. I put raw chicken on the grill with food prep gloves and throw em away after each time. The last thing you would want is to lose your house because a guest got the sick from some under cooked chicken or cross contamination! I put all slaw potato salad and other cold foods on ice while on the buffet table. Keep hot foods in chafing dishes keeping em at 140. Keep it to private areas and back yards and you'll be pretty safe. If youíre charging $10-$12 per plate for 100 people youíll do just fine profiting about $600-$700 a gig. :P
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Old 03-06-2011, 12:52 PM   #5
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

I'm in the middle of a food safety class right now. The biggest thing that they keep bringing up is cross contamination!
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:56 PM   #6
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

yes I have been serv safe certified since 2008 and know all about what I need to do to stay save in that regard. I am fully prepared to serve safe and great tasting Q just the health dept is driving me nuts....lol. Thanks for all your input on this I do appreciate it and look forward to sharing alot of BBQ experience between us all.
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Old 03-12-2011, 10:51 AM   #7
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

If you don't call the HD then you can claim ignorance. If you do call the HD and then start to work and they question you your screwed. Most likely you'll be screwed anyways. It's easy to get your license. All they want is your $$$$. After that comes the hard part..jumping through all the hoops that they put out there. haha! As soon as you trip on a hoop and they can catch it once again your screwed....lol
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Old 03-12-2011, 11:08 AM   #8
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Ignorance of the law is no excuse. You will never win that battle.
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Old 03-12-2011, 12:43 PM   #9
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Prochilo
Ignorance of the law is no excuse. You will never win that battle.
Right, Thats why I said your probably screwed anyways.
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:43 PM   #10
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

actually found out from them that unless I am serving to the general public (off the street) that private parties I dont have to have a license or permit at all. They said that falls under private chef and not catering. Sounds like I only have to buy temporary permit then for festivals and such.
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Old 03-13-2011, 05:43 PM   #11
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

That's how it works here too. Hawk, that is a bad ass looking rig man!
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Old 03-23-2011, 05:35 PM   #12
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Thanks Puff.
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Old 03-25-2011, 11:02 PM   #13
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

Quote:
Originally Posted by hawk wild bbq co
actually found out from them that unless I am serving to the general public (off the street) that private parties I dont have to have a license or permit at all. They said that falls under private chef and not catering. Sounds like I only have to buy temporary permit then for festivals and such.
Hawk. Out here we have festivals and street fairs where you pay $200 to vend and your are safe. You fall under the event's umbrella. They are cultural events, rodio days, street fairs etc. Keep a look out for those events too.
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Old 03-27-2011, 08:54 AM   #14
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

yea we have applied for several spots in those types of venues already. Just waiting to hear if we made the "cut".
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:18 AM   #15
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

I'm trying to find out this info also. I live in the Bronx, NY and it's NYC so it's been IMPOSSIBLE for me to find out anything or get a hold of someone or someone call me back etc. If anyone has any info on this or can help me I'd be greatful!
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Old 04-06-2011, 05:16 PM   #16
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Re: Do you have to be licensed to do private parties

hell there are so many people in new york city who is gonna know what the heck you are doing. Just do private parties and small gigs and you will be fine.
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