Jul 22, 2019

New food booth regulations may cut into vendor profits

The Lion Dance Club served pan fried noodles at last year’s Vintage Days. The club is not on this year’s list of participating vendors. Leadership Development and Activities adviser Josh Edrington said that new regulations may make it harder on organizations trying to sell food.
File photo by Shaun Ho / The Collegian

New state regulations on special-event food vendors could affect the pocketbooks of campus organizations during Vintage Days.

That’s because California Health Department has passed new laws that regulate any community-event vendor attempting to sell food.

This law has been interpreted by Fresno County Department of Community Health director Edward L. Moreno to include new hand-washing facilities in food booths, mesh screens that wrap around any booth with food inside, and a three-compartment sink to wash, rinse and sanitize.

According to Josh Edrington, the Leadership Development and Activities adviser at Fresno State, the three-compartment sinks have to be purchased from a nearby seller at a cost of $1,500 minimum.

According to Moreno, the three-compartment sink serves three purposes. First, utensils need to be washed in hot, soapy water in the first compartment. Second, utensils have to be rinsed in warm, clear water in the second compartment. Third, the utensils are then sanitized in the third compartment, with an approved chemical sanitizer.

Edrington said these new regulations may make it harder on organizations trying to sell food at Vintage Days this year.

“We definitely have a smaller amount of organizations participating this year, but we are not sure if that is because of these new rules,” Edrington said.

All the organizations that signed up to have a food booth during Vintage Days were required to attend a mandatory meeting on March 1. At the meeting, everyone was informed about these new regulations and questions were answered so that no organizations were confused.

Any organization that did not show up to this meeting was dropped from the list of registered organizations for Vintage Days. Consequently, the dropped organizations will no longer be able to have a food booth during this week’s events.

Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity has a food booth this year with tri-tip sandwiches and drinks. President Mathew Vega said that a lot of time and commitment is necessary to have a successful booth at Vintage Days.

“The new rules and regulations shouldn’t impact us too much because of the large amount of members that we have, and the amount of money we are going to make,” Vega said.

These new regulations may cut down the amount of money that groups have been able to make. Edrington said that this is a new challenge for the campus, and any group wanting to operate a food booth.

According to Edrington, the state health officials will be lenient this year during inspections because of how new these rules are.

“As the years go on, the rules will stiffen up, though,” Edrington said.

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