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Food Service Permit Application Requirements

The Environmental Health Services (EHS) Division of the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health (DBCH) provides the following services for food service operations:

  • Issues permits to operate
  • Inspects food service operations
  • Reviews and approves kitchen layout plans
  • Responds to consumer complaints related to public health and food safety
  • Investigates foodborne related illness
  • Offers food safety courses
  • Promotes safe food handling practices and preparation
     

Examples include restaurants, cafés, bars, cafeterias, pizza shops, bakeries, mobile food trucks, caterers, ice cream parlors, commissaries, vending food machines, food service at events, and some delis.

Dutchess County Food Service Permit Application Requirements

A food service application must include:

Application must be submitted by U.S. Mail or in person to:

Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health
Environmental Health Services
85 Civic Center Plaza - Suite 106
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

Applications are processed as soon as possible.  Individual facility circumstances may affect the overall length of time for approval.

For questions regarding your permit application, call the Environmental Health Services Division at (845) 486-3404.

For your first inspection, please use the Food Service Establishment Self-Inspection Checklist to help you prepare. 

Some food service operations are regulated by New York State Agriculture and Markets.  Find additional information regarding food service operations regulated by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

Additional information regarding Workers' Compensation and disability insurance may be found at the Workers' Compensation Board.

Most food service establishment permits are valid for one year. Seasonal and Temporary Food Service Permits are valid for the duration indicated on the permit.

 

Food Service Descriptions, Fees, & Codes

Risk Level

Seating Capacity

Fee

Low Risk

≤ 50

$165

Low Risk

Between 51 and 100

$240

Low Risk

> 100

$330

Medium Risk

≤ 50

$200

Medium Risk

Between 51 and 100

$265

Medium Risk

> 100

$365

High Risk

≤ 50

$265

High Risk

Between 51 and 100

$335

High Risk

> 100

$400

A food service establishment is a place where food is prepared and intended for individual portion service and includes the site at which the individual portions are provided, whether consumption occurs on or off the premises and whether temporary or permanent.

The term excludes food processing establishments, retail food stores, private homes where food is prepared or served for family consumption, and food service operations where a distinct group mutually provides, prepares, serves and consumes the food such as a "covered-dish supper" limited to a congregation, club or fraternal organization.

Application fee is dependent on risk level and seating capacity. Contact a DBCH representative at (845) 486-3404 to determine the fee.


Dutchess County Sanitary Code, Article 14 - Food Service Establishments (page 50)
New York State Sanitary Code - Subpart 14-1 - Food Service Establishments

 

 

A temporary food service establishment is a place where food is prepared or handled and served to the public, with or without charge, and operates at a fixed location as part of a single event or celebration of no more than 14 days.

Application fees:

        1-2 days duration             $30
        3-14 days duration           $55

Dutchess County Sanitary Code, Article 12 - Temporary Food Service Establishments (page 48)

New York State Sanitary Code Subpart 14-2 - Temporary Food Service Establishments


The following events providing food service require a temporary food permit:

  • A fair, carnival, music event, or circus
  • Community celebrations
  • Public exhibitions
  • Sports events
  • Church events held off church property serving food to the public (Churches serving to the public more than once a week are required to obtain a year-round permit).
  • Fundraisers
  • Craft fairs
  • Open houses
     

The following events DO NOT require a temporary food permit:

Your event is not considered a temporary food service if the food is prepared or provided by members of a group for members of the group and their invited guests, such as:
 

  • A meeting or an event for a private or charitable organization, association, a fraternal group, or club
  • An activity in a church or other religious congregation for members
  • A gathering such as a party, picnic or potluck where food is shared.
  • Private weddings that do their own food preparation


Please note:  Any public advertisement of an event will require a food permit(s).


What about a bake sale?

A bake sale is not considered a temporary event as long as only dry baked goods, such as cookies, brownies, and cake, are offered. If you are offering baked goods with cream toppings, fillings, or pumpkin pie, a temporary permit is required.
 
What about a “potluck dinner”?

A potluck dinner served to a distinct group of individuals does not require a permit.  Call Environmental Health Services at (845) 486-3404 if you have questions. 
 
When should I submit an application?

An application for a temporary food establishment permit must be submitted at least two weeks prior to your event to allow time for processing of the permit. All fees must be paid prior to a permit being issued.

A mobile food service establishment is a self-contained food service operation, located in a vehicle or a movable stand, self or otherwise propelled, used to store, prepare, display or serve food.

Application fee: $165 

New York State Sanitary Code Subpart 14-4 - Mobile Food Service Establishments and Foodcarts

A caterer is a person who prepares, provides, or prepares and provides food intended for consumption at the premises of the consumer, whether the premises are temporary or permanent.

Application fee: $365

New York State Sanitary Code Subpart 14-1 - Food Service Establishments

A commissary is a place where food is stored, processed or packaged and prepared in individual portions for service at a food service establishment. A commissary supplying vending machines, mobile food service establishments, or owned and operated by an owner operating the food service establishment exclusively served by the commissary, is to be operated under a permit.

Application fees:

Distribution only                               $160
Preparation and distribution            $300

 

New York State Sanitary Code Subpart 14-1 - Food Service Establishments

A food vending machine is a self-service device that dispenses unit servings of food or beverage. 

Application fee: $35 per vending machine

New York State Sanitary Code - Subpart 14-5 - Vending of Food and Beverages