Author Topic: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business  (Read 625 times)

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Offline polishpizza

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Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« on: February 19, 2013, 08:46:21 PM »
Starting to talk to my local health department about the mobile business I am thinking about starting...anyone have any general advice, etc. to give me from your dealings with you local health department?  I have a plan document they told me to fill out.  95% of the questions are not relevant to my business...urggghhhh.
Polack trying to make pizza


Offline waltertore

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2013, 06:08:24 AM »
I run a commercial bakery/pizza at the high school I teach at.  The board of health is no sweat.  They are mainly concerned with food temps in the cooler, labeling/dating of opened stuff in it, and basic common sense food handling stuff.  You will most likely have to take a food safety course.  It is very informative.  They have been helpful in many ways.  Keep a smile on your face.  They deal constantly with businesses that are failing, unable to make repairs, etc.   They are really the least of your worries with opening a new business.  Walter

Offline polishpizza

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2013, 07:06:24 AM »
Thanks Walter.  I'm already signed up for the ServSafe class...the journey begins....
Polack trying to make pizza

Offline Ev

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2013, 08:46:25 AM »
Thanks Walter.  I'm already signed up for the ServSafe class...the journey begins....
You know, you can take that exam online and print out your certificate, right?

Offline polishpizza

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2013, 08:51:24 AM »
yes sir.  two options online curriculum or onsite.  Not sure what I am going to do but thanks.
Polack trying to make pizza

Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2013, 09:34:09 AM »
I one had a mobile unit that I used for visiting local fairs, sporting events, etc. Just be aware that you will be licensed for your county and state. You may need to get additional licensing to operate in a different county, and if you are located near a state line as I was, you will need to be licensed in that state too. Plus, depending upon your concept, your trailer may need to be licensed in the "other" state too. Just a whole lotta things to be aware of.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline polishpizza

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2013, 03:38:39 PM »
Thank you.  Big issue I am having is a catering or commercial kitchen...basically to make the dough...it like an act of Congress...I do understand the issues it is just painful.
Polack trying to make pizza

Offline jeff v

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2013, 04:36:11 PM »
Thank you.  Big issue I am having is a catering or commercial kitchen...basically to make the dough...it like an act of Congress...I do understand the issues it is just painful.

Try searching "shared use kitchen". The one I use charges by the hour and if you use crazy hours like I do they are less expensive. Also, I have found lots of churches have kitchens that are health dept approved.

Offline dineomite

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2013, 04:57:30 PM »
I'd be more concerned with the vending aspects ie ability to cater and hold a vending license, as well as rules for unit storage, and licensure for the kitchen. The other problem is figuring out where exactly you're allowed to set up a mobile unit. I was surprised how open to interpretation a lot of these things were.

Offline polishpizza

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2013, 06:26:11 PM »
I'm weeding through all this now.  I have a friend who is a retired sanitarian from a couple of years ago and he is helping me...still painful.  In my situation, the dough is the only thing I will be actually making and for that I need a licensed kitchen. 
Polack trying to make pizza


Offline waltertore

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2013, 06:53:03 PM »
I'm weeding through all this now.  I have a friend who is a retired sanitarian from a couple of years ago and he is helping me...still painful.  In my situation, the dough is the only thing I will be actually making and for that I need a licensed kitchen. 

Try a local college that has a culinary curriculum.   I know Ohio State University rents out their commercial kitchen and charge by the amount of space/equipment you use.  As mentioned above, many bakeries rent out their space in off hours.  Good luck!  Walter

Offline polishpizza

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2013, 06:55:15 PM »
Good idea.  I'm most concerned about proximity to my house and office.
Polack trying to make pizza

Offline waltertore

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2013, 07:04:24 PM »
Good idea.  I'm most concerned about proximity to my house and office.

It is a pain in the butt to have to rent a space for just making dough.  I know in Ohio there is a license that people who sell at farmers markets get that allows them to make breads and baked goods at home.  Dough is a pretty docile thing in the food spectrum of what can spoil easily and result in illness.  Another thought is check your local caters.  Many have small kitchens and would most likely welcome some extra "dough".   Walter

Offline dineomite

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2013, 07:43:26 PM »
The home kitchen is a pretty tough little deal (no dogs or cats, must exhibit ample storage, etc.) Lining up a church kitchen or even better a church with a school was the way I was going to go. If you're keeping your day job, the hours of operation tend to work much better than trying to shoehorn your production into a restaurant's schedule. Proximity to everything in your life is important, though.

Offline norma427

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Re: Dealing with Health Department for mobile business
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2013, 07:48:49 PM »
polishpizza,

I donít know if your state allows for dough to be made at home, but our state allows different baked products to be made at home like Walter posted.  A kitchen in a home needs to be inspected in our state though.  You are right though that no dogs or cats can be in the kitchen while food is being made.

The one pain in our state is a single small business has to pay the same amount of money to the Dept. of Revenue if you own a single small location, or a bigger restaurant for a license.  

We used to have a storage shed where we produced things related to making popcorn and candy.  It was inspected.

Best of luck wading though everything.

Norma
« Last Edit: February 20, 2013, 07:50:33 PM by norma427 »
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