How to Get a Temporary Food Service License from the Health Department

A temporary food service establishment is a food and/or beverage stand that is disassembled and moved from location to location. The food stand must operate for no more than 14 days in any one location. If you plan to sell prepared food at a farmers market, fair or other special event, you may need to apply for this license.


  1. Review the requirements for a temporary food service establishment.

  2. Submit a complete application at least 15 days before the first event.

  3. Make sure you have a separate license for any offsite preparation locations.

  4. The license will be mailed to you after the application is reviewed and approved.

  5. Be prepared for an inspection at any event where you operate.

Please Note:

  • Applications and fees will not be accepted at events.

  • Incomplete applications will be returned.

Materials for You

Apply for a Temporary Food Service License

What event coordinators need to know

Event coordinators play a vital role in sharing information and verifying license status with your food vendors to help avoid issues during the event.

To help us prepare for your event, please provide details in advance by completing the Event Coordinator application. There is no fee for the application, and the form can be sent electronically or by regular mail. Event Coordinators can prepare by confirming that each food stand is properly licensed before the event, as public health inspectors will not accept applications or fees on-site. Vendors must be able to present the license at the time of inspection. 

Submit an Event Coordinator Application

Resources for you


Farmers Market Food Safety: Selling Prepared Foods and Baked Goods Part of the University of Vermont Extension fact sheet series on Food Safety for Farmers Market Vendors
Farmers Market Food Safety: General Food Safety Practices, Providing Samples, Selling Fresh Produce
Part of the University of Vermont Extension fact sheet series on Food Safety for Farmers Market Vendors
Consumer Advisory Sign Sample sign to warn of the potential health risks from eating raw or undercooked foods
Handwash Station for Temporary Food Stands How to set up a handwash station for use at temporary food service events
When You're Healthy, We're All Healthy: How Food Workers can Stop Foodborne Illness Video for food establishments to share with food workers about how to keep illnesses from spreading
Sanitation Guide for Food Service Employees Printable, quick-reference guide on the basics of sanitation for food handlers
Contact Us

Food & Lodging Program

108 Cherry St., PO Box 70 

Burlington, VT 05402-0070

Phone: 802-863-7221 or 800-439-8550 (toll-free within Vermont)

Fax: 802-863-7483

Email: [email protected]

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