Food Permit

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Food Permit

Post by Sunkix4 » Sat Jun 26, 2010 8:15 pm

Hey Everyone! This year we will be out on the playa with rootbeer floats!

Does anyone know the food permit process once we get to the playa?? Any tips on getting approved?


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Post by theCryptofishist » Sat Jun 26, 2010 8:27 pm

Get in contact with the people (Pershing County Health Department, I think) now. I think you do the paperwork pre-event, and they have an inspection once the event starts. Then they give you the license at that point. It costs $50. As someone who's had a case or two of food bourne illness and doesn't like the idea of the trots on playa, I don't find the idea of getting the permit offensive. Others will and they will advise you to go guerrilla and caco and underground and not get the permit. You risk being shut down, I have no idea of legal repercussions. I would hope that anyone forgoing the permit for whatever reason would still keep basic cleanliness rules.
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Post by oneeyeddick » Sat Jun 26, 2010 9:46 pm

Will pickles be made available ?
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Post by goathead » Sat Jun 26, 2010 11:18 pm

Here you go, they are really helpful, and for us have been easy to work with.
Gifting food or fresh juices to the public, requires a permit from the Nevada State Health Division. Visit to learn what is required.

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Post by Sunkix4 » Sun Jun 27, 2010 9:36 pm

Thanks!! I'll be sure to have plenty of pickles ready!

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Post by bigbluedoggy » Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:15 pm

As the instructions state, get the form from the Nevada Health Dept online. Fill it out as best you can... there are helpful instructions on what to put in the various address boxes on the BM site, since you won't really know your address when you submit the app. Send them your $50.00. You will receive a receipt and a pending permit back in a couple of weeks (up to 4 or 5 sometimes). Bring that with you to the Playa. Setup your camp and make sure to have a good handwashing and dishwashing setup, as well as adequate refrigeration for anything requiring it (Ice Cream?).

The Health Dept will let you know in the letter with your receipt when you can go to Playa Info near Center Camp and get your actual permit. You have to go to them to get it at specific times, usually Monday morning of opening day at around 9 or 10am. They will likely be there for an hour on Mon and Tue so don't be late. Look for updates in the Placement Announces as well. Once you have the permit, you are free to do your food or beverage service, but they will come by at some point and inspect your setup to make sure you are meeting the requirements to keep people healthy. We have always passed with flying colors.

The things they care the most about are adequate dishwashing, refrigeration and food handling. We have rented a handwash station from the JOTS folks for the last 3 years and the health department loves that. Best bet is a 3 step dishwashing setup. One tub to wash with soap (we use a spray bottle with hot soapy water in it instead of an immersive soap bath - it saves water), a hot rinse tub, and a cold bleach dip tub. I forget the amount of bleach required but there are test strips you should get before you go to the playa. Any restaurant supply store will sell them. I think it is 50/ppm or something like that. If you are doing anything with fresh fruit, the cutting surface and utensils will fall under close scrutiny.

The Health Department folks are really very helpful and will generally let you know how to fix anything you may be doing wrong. They are there for everyone's protection and are not "the enemy". Yes, it's another layer of rules, but there are just too many people out there now to not have some form of control on food and drink prep (IMHO). If you have specific questions about the type of food you are doing, I would suggest clearing it up with them before hitting the Playa, although I believe you aren't supposed to put anything but the application into your original letter to them. Try calling them. They won't bite.

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Post by EspressoDude » Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:06 pm

Food permit required. You will need to display it.
3-basin wash required for serving scoops, etc in contact with food. It may be in an adjacent rv, not necessarily at your booth/bar, thus is cleaner.
Bleach test strips required.
Thermometer for refrigerated food required

Single use paper cups good idea, but better idea is byo cup. Develop method of serving so that your utensils do not touch customer's cup/mug.

Warm water hand wash station required. ( we used a large solar shower, soap, and paper towels at Espresso Camp )

Check the NV health site for details and specifics.
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Post by silkkat813 » Wed Jun 30, 2010 1:23 pm

If what we are serving does not need to be refrigerated, do we need a permit still? Offering tequilla and chips and salsa?

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Post by Lassen Forge » Wed Jun 30, 2010 1:39 pm

silkkat813 wrote:If what we are serving does not need to be refrigerated, do we need a permit still? Offering tequilla and chips and salsa?
If it's a internal camp gig, or somesuch, then no, but... Prolly, if you want to do it right - you need to fridge the Salsa. And clean your serving bowls and utensils. And your Tequila glassware.

I was considering getting one for the Kantina, but our operation there is booze only, with the proviso "Drink it neat, or drink it nyet". Still, I have the triplewash station for the glassware I use and the various utensils and stuff - like Fishy said, you do NOT want the karma from getting someone sick out there (and yes, I have gotten salmonella from Salsa).

Speaking of - Stored foods must be kept BELOW 40F or ABOVE 140F.

Remember - it's to keep the participants safe.


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