A food permit is required any time food is served to the public, however, not every permit need not be a permanent one. A temporary food permit is appropriate when:
- An individual or group will be serving food to the public,
- Food is not a commercially packed, single-serving, shelf-stable item,
- Food will be served at one location, and
- Food service is part of a single event or celebration, even if it is over the course of several days.
Applications for temporary food permits are reviewed using the same HACCP analysis to ensure safe food preparation, storage, and handling techniques are used. Approved permits must be displayed at the location of service during the event.
1. Complete a Temporary Food Establishment application.
2. Submit completed application to LCHD.
Online applications are reviewed the next business day. Completed paper applications can be emailed to Lucy Sheridan, mailed or faxed to LCHD, or dropped off at the office in Davenport.
3. Submit application processing fee.
If the event is seven or more days away, the processing fee is $35 per day food is being served. Events less than seven days away are $50 per day food is being served. Payment can be made in-person at the LCHD office via check, cash, money orders, or card. Payments can also be made over the phone with a debit or credit card. Any payment via card will have an additional $2.50 processing fee.
4. Complete application review with LCHD.
An interview with the applicant is often part of the permitting process. This allows the LCHD to gather the information needed to confirm safety compliance. For applications submitted in-person, the interview can happen when you drop off the application, time permitting. For applications submitted another way, a member of the environmental health team will conduct a phone interview.
5. Submit any additional information, if required.
Depending on the application, there may be additional items needed before the permit can be issued. Not everyone will have additional information needs, but some may.
6. Receive permit.
Once the application process is completed, your permit will be issued. You can pick up a hard copy at the LCHD office or we will email you a PDF file for you to print.
7. Display permit at the event.
Temporary event food permits must be displayed at the location where the food is being served through the entire event. LCHD sends inspectors to every event to ensure compliance with the permitting requirements and food safety rules and regulations.
There are times when you will not need a food permit, but you will need to apply for an exemption. The following consumables do not need a food permit:
- Popcorn, all varieties
- Cotton Candy
- Roasted and/or Candy-Coated Nuts
- Individually packaged and sealed shelf-stable food
- Sealed bottled and/or canned beverages
- On-site, immediately served roasted corn-on-the-cob*
- On-site, immediately served roasted peppers*
- Commercially packaged chocolate-dipped ice cream bars
*If the corn or pepper is pre-roasted or roasted and served later, a permit is required.
The following consumables may not need a food permit, if they follow the required caveats:
- Dried herbs and spices, which were processed in a permitted facility
- Machine-crushed ice drinks, when using non-hazardous ingredients and the ice is from a permitted source. Ice from personal supplies does NOT meet the criteria for exemption.
- Chocolate dipped bananas, when the bananas are peeled and frozen in a permitted facility
- Sliced fresh fruit and vegetable samples, when served immediately and are non-hazardous produce
If you believe you will be serving food that meets the exemption requirements, please contact Lucy Sheridan to discuss applying for an exemption.