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Temporary Events

​Temporary Events are community events conducted for not more than 25 consecutive or nonconsecutive days in a 90-day period and that is of civic, political, public, or educational nature, including state and county fairs, city festivals, circuses, and other public gathering events approved by the Department of Environmental Health, where food is given away or sold to the general public. Temporary events usually consist of one or more food booths/operations, also known as temporary food facilities (TFF). It is the responsibility of the Santa Clara Department of Environmental Health to review all TFFs to ensure the protection and food safety of the public.

 

EVENT COORDINATOR:
The Event Coordinator is the person or organization that is responsible for organizing food-related activities shared by the temporary food facilities (TFF) operating at a temporary event. It is the responsibility of the Event Coordinator to be familiar with the rules and guidelines of the TFFs that will be operating at their event. He or she liaises and works closely with the Department of Environmental Health to ensure safe and successful food services at the event.
 
ALL EVENTS MUST SUBMIT THE EVENT ORGANIZER/COORDINATOR
APPLICATION AND RECEIVE A PERMIT TO OPERATE A TEMPORARY EVENT
*If you will have two or more temporary food or beverage operations,
the Event Coordinator permit fee applies.*
 
TO SUBMIT AN EVENT PACKET:
  1. Complete the Event Organizer/Coordinator Permit Application located on the bottom of this page.
  2. Identify and confirm each temporary food or beverage facility participating in your event. 
  3. Distribute all required forms and handouts to each participating temporary food facility. 
    • A permit is required for all TFFs (unless otherwise specified) in which food or beverage (unpackaged or prepackaged) is sampled, sold, prepared, or given away to the public. These applications count towards the number of food operations when determining the Event Coordinator fee.
    • Out-of-county mobile food carts and vehicles must submit an application, fee, and a copy of valid Environmental Health Permit. These applications count towards the number of food operations when determining the Event Coordinator fee. If conducting advanced food preparation, the commissary kitchen permit holder must sign the application and provide a copy of their permit. Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) may also be required. If you have a permit-to-operate at the commissary kitchen or own a food establishment, please provide a copy of the permit.
    • Mobile food carts and vehicles permitted in Santa Clara County must have their valid operating health permit present at the event. Applications and permit fees are not required for temporary events. These operators do not count towards the number of food operations when determining the Event Coordinator fee. Provide a list containing the business name and the permit number (issued by the County of Santa Clara Department of Environmental Health) for each of these Mobile Food Facility operators. Submit this complete list of Mobile Food Facility operators as part of your event packet.
  4. Collect the applications with the appropriate fees from all participating TFF operators.  Please have checks made payable to The County of Santa Clara.  The Event Coordinator may also choose to submit one check to cover all temporary permit fees or cash in person. Only the Event Coordinator can submit applications to the Department.
  5. Ensure that all forms are legible and complete.
  6. Submit a site plan that shows the locations of the food booths, toilet and hand washing facilities, waste disposal locations (garbage/trash, liquid waste, grease waste, metal waste container).
  7. Submit your event packet (applications, forms, site plan and payments) at least 2 weeks before your event to:
    Department of Environmental Health
    1555 Berger Drive, Suite 300
    San Jose, CA. 95112-2716
    Attn: Temporary Events
Note: To help us plan for the 2018 calendar year, please complete the Event Notification Form found below for your event. Please note that this notification form is the ONLY form that can be submitted to the Department electronically.
 
 
 
VENDORS/TEMPORARY FOOD FACILITY OPERATORS:
Temporary Food Facilities (TFF) or food booths are food operations that operate at approved public events.  A health permit is required to operate a TFF whenever food or beverage (unpackaged or prepackaged) is sampled, sold, prepared, or given away to the public.  Food shall be obtained from sources that comply with all applicable laws.  Food stored or prepared in a private home shall not be used or offered for sale unless that food is prepared by a cottage food operation that is registered or has a permit.  Permitted operations are inspected by the Department of Environmental Health.
 
Obtaining a Temporary Food Facility Permit:
  1. Complete the application, Temporary Food Facility (Vendor), located on the bottom of this page.
  2. Submit application and fee to the Event Coordinator.  The Event Coordinator must submit the completed application and fee to the Department of Environmental Health at least 2 weeks prior to the event or a 25% late fee will apply. Applications and fees sent directly to the Department may be returned.
  3. Once approved, you will receive your Temporary Food Facility Permit from the Event Coordinator.
  4. The permit must be posted at your temporary food facility (i.e. booth) at all times during operation.
Operational guides and other documents are provided below to help you prepare and operate your temporary food facility in a safe and effective manner.
 
Current Environmental Health Permit Fees:
ADVISORY NOTES:
  • SELLING FOOD OR BEVERAGES WITHOUT A VALID HEALTH PERMIT WILL RESULT IN THE IMMEDIATE CLOSURE OF THE FOOD FACILITY, MAY RESULT IN THE ISSUANCE OF A MISDEMEANOR CITATION, POSSIBLE FINES, AND DENIAL OF FUTURE HEALTH PERMITS.​
  • PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2012, THE EVENT COORDINATOR FEES IS BASED ON THE NUMBER OF FOOD BOOTHS/OPERATIONS AT YOUR EVENT; THE FOOD VENDOR PERMIT FEE IS BASED ON THE COMPLEXITY OF THE MENU ITEMS AS WELL AS THE DURATION OF THE EVENT. THERE WILL NO LONGER BE A DISCOUNTED FEE FOR NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS.​
  • THE EVENT COORDINATOR MUST SUBMIT THE COMPLETED APPLICATION AND FEE TO THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH AT LEAST 2 WEEKS PRIOR TO THE EVENT OR A 25% LATE FEE WILL APPLY.
 
NUMBER OF FOOD OPERATIONS   EVENT COORDINATOR FEE
1 FOOD OPERATION ​$ 0.00
​2 TO 10 FOOD OPERATIONS ​$ 172.00
​11 TO 20 FOOD OPERATIONS ​$ 252.00
​21 FOOD OPERATIONS OR MORE ​$ 343.00
 
 
​PERMIT TYPES
FOOD VENDOR CATEGORIES
​FEE 1-12 DAYS PER EVENT ​FEE 13+ DAYS PER EVENT
​Risk Category 1 (RC1) Low Risk ​$ 99.00 ​$ 99.00
​Risk Category 2 (RC2) Moderate Risk ​$ 145.00 ​$ 202.00
​Risk Category 3 (RC3) High Risk ​$ 186.00 ​$ 241.00
​Sampling Only - No food/beverage sales
Limited to small sample sizes
​$ 88.00 ​$ 88.00
​Mobile Food Facilities - carts/vehicles permitted by Santa Clara Co. ​No temp event fee required operating under annual permit ​-
​Mobile Food Facilities - carts/vehicles NOT under permit by Santa Clara Co. Fee will depend on menu - RC 1, 2 or 3​ ​Fee will depend on menu - RC 1,2,3
​Veteran *must submit Affidavit for a Veteran's Exemption form and all required documentation (see form) ​$ 0.00 ​​$ 0.00
 
RISK CATEGORY DESCRIPTIONS:

Food operation that operates on a  single day or for multiple days is $99. Temporary Food Facility Low Risk/RC 1 includes:
• Prepackaged, non-potentially hazardous foods (non-PHFs), or
• Prepares only non-PHFs.  Examples include prepackaged foods/beverages, kettle corn, candies.
• Reheating commercially manufactured ready to eat foods with no further processing.  Examples include canned chili beans, hot dogs, nacho cheese
 
Food operation that operate 1 to 12 days is $145 or operates 13+ days is $202. Temporary Food Facility Moderate Risk/RC 2 includes:
• Food that is for same day service to customers (hamburgers, raw sausages, crepes etc.).
• Food that is prepared/cooked onsite and served with hot or cold holding of potentially hazardous food (PHF) after preparation.
• Absolutely no cooling of potentially hazardous foods are allowed, either in advance or on site.
• All prepared food is to be discarded at end of day (includes hot foods, and any cold foods that have exceeded 41F).
• The business owner of a brick and mortar food facility with a valid permit, prepares in advance of the event (potato salad, pot pies, and tamales) at their approved facility; the facility must have a valid permit and inspected by the local enforcement agency (you are the owner of that fixed facility); must provide a copy of their permit with the application
 
Food operations that operate 1 to 12 days is $186 or operates 13+ days is $241. Temporary Food Facility High Risk/RC3 includes:
• Food that is prepared in advance of the event (potato salad, pot pies, and tamales) at an approved facility
• Extensive menus with the handling and preparation of raw ingredients or complex preparation which includes cooking, cooling and/or reheating.
• Food that is prepared in advance of the event (potato salad, pot pies, and tamales) at an approved facility permitted and inspected by the local enforcement agency (you are not the owner of that fixed facility but renting kitchen space, or with the owner's permission)
• Food that is prepared for multi-day use.
• All prepared food is to be discarded at end of day (includes hot foods, and any cold foods that have exceeded 41F).
 
Note:  A processor of general food commodities (e.g. baked goods, noodles, processed fresh vegetables, seafood, snack foods, dietary supplements, etc.) must obtain a Processed Food Registration (PFR) from the state Food and Drug Branch.  The PFR is needed prior to obtaining a TFF permit from the DEH.  For more information, visit the state website: Processed Food Registration
 
Craven Act Exemption (Donated Foods):
Non-Profit Organization will qualify for this exemption if they coordinate a community event and receive 100% of food including beverages from for-profit food facilities receiving no monetary benefit, but only public recognition for their donation.  Please complete the forms for the Craven Act Exemption.  Submit all Craven Act forms (see below), a copy of your IRS tax determination letter, and a cover letter describing your event to the Department at least 2 weeks before your event.  Once all required information is submitted and approved, a Craven Act exemption letter will be generated and sent to you.
 
For more information or questions regarding Temporary Events contact:
Suzanne Lew, REHS
Senior Environmental Health Specialist
suzanne.lew@cep.sccgov.org
(408) 918-3461
 
Or call (408) 918-3400 and ask to speak to Administrative Support for Temporary Events
 
Last updated: 5/18/2018 11:36 AM