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Event Planning & Sanitation

Guidelines for Special Event Food Stands

The selling of food on University of Minnesota campuses for fund raising, student activities, or other special events is an important part of campus life. As with all types of food sales or giveaways, there are criteria that need to be followed to ensure the health and safety of the customer. All events on the University Campus where food is sold or given away require the approval of the University's environmental hygiene officer.  Listed below are the minimum requirements for the dispensing of food to the public.  The UMD environmental hygiene officer representative (218) 726-7139 may restrict the type of food or the method of food preparation to protect the health of consumers.


Means shall be provided to control dust if the food stand is not on a dust proof surface.

Walls & Ceilings

All exterior food stands shall be located under an awning/tent ceiling of similar structure. Exterior food stands may require sidewall construction during periods of adverse weather.

Water Supply

Potable (drinking) water for maintaining the food stand sanitation shall be provided. Water may be transported in approved containers. (See the environmental hygiene officer for details.)


Mechanical refrigeration is required for holding potentially hazardous foods. Food items such as frozen hot dogs, brats, etc. may be kept in an insulated container, provided they are cooked from the frozen state and the food stand is not in operation for greater than three (3) hours.


A duplicate set of required food utensils shall be provided. Utensils shall be stored in a closed container until used.

Food Protection

No food or food surface shall be accessible by a customer unless it is by approved self-service methods.

Food Source

All foods shall come from approved commercial sources.

Food Storage

All foods and food containers shall be kept at least eight (8) inches above the floor or ground.

Food Temperature

At all times, cold foods shall be at or below 41°F and hot foods shall be at or above 140°F until served to the customer.

Liquid Waste

All liquid waste shall be discharged to an approved sanitary sewer.

Solid Waste

All solid waste shall be stored and disposed of in a manner that will not create a nuisance.

Hand Washing

Hand washing shall be provided at each food stand. It may consist of one of the following:

  1. Flowing water that discharges to a sanitary sewer or holding tank and a soap dispenser with individual towels.

  2. The use of an approved hand sanitizer.


Condiments (catsup, relish, sugar, etc.) shall be in individual packs. Straws shall be wrapped.

Cooking Equipment

Almost all cooking appliances are approved. Crock pots are not approved.

Other Equipment

A minimum of two (2) work surfaces shall be provided. Work surfaces shall be nonabsorbent.

Sanitizing Work Surfaces

All work surfaces shall be cleaned and sanitized before any food or food containers are placed on the work surface. Household bleach, mixed at a ratio of one tablespoon to a gallon of potable water, is a sanitizing solution. Sanitizing solution shall be applied with a single service, disposable cloth. Disposable cloths shall also be used to wipe up food spills, etc.

Individual Practices

Individuals shall:

  1. Maintain their hands in a clean condition.

  2. Wash hands after using the toilet, handing raw food, smoking,or other contamination of the hands.

  3. Wear clean outer garments and effective hair restraint.

  4. Not serve food when knowing they have a communicable disease.

The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.