If my livelihood, the well-being of my family and my ability to provide for myself and others was on the line… I'D MOST CERTAINLY START HOT DOG VENDING WITHOUT A LICENSE.
You'd think with restaurants closing down as fast as they are and less inspections needing done – that the local health inspector would have lots of free time and be available to inspect a hot dog vendor's cart…
With COVID-19 effecting our lives, many soon to be vendors are experiencing a conundrum.
Health departments have been experiencing staff shortages and many have moved folks from one department to help in more crucial departments.
4 TIPS FOR HOT DOG VENDING WITHOUT A LICENSE
1. Get your city / county permit – this is not the health department license but a simple license to be in business. Usually this can be done online.
2. Get a tax number – this also is easy and most states can be done online in just minutes.
3. Get food safety certified (not a must but I recommend it) –can often go online and learn food safety measures and become certified almost instantly. This allows you to display a certification on your cart and tells your customers and the health department that you are a responsible vendor. You can get free certifications right now (due to Covid).
4. Insurance. You can get insured easily and for under $300. This will give you $2 million in liability coverage.
THIS COULD MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE…
Doing the 4 steps above tells anyone that you took the necessary steps within your control to become a legal vendor.
Then – in the event you are vending without a health department license and an inspector stops by… it will be proof you are a responsible vendor.
However, if the inspector shows up and not only are you not licensed, but you have no food safety training, no business license, no resale ID and no insurance… the inspector would see that as someone trying to work around the system and truly – illegally vending.
And I know for a fact, you'll stand a higher chance of fines and even confiscation (impoundment) of your cart if you don't have the basic business licenses as listed above.
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