Mobile Food Facility Health Permitting

What is the process?

Step 1: Consult with an Inspector

A health permit to operate a Mobile Food Facility will not be issued unless all construction and operational requirements are met.  If you have completed a plan check for your Mobile Food Facility and have already been working with an inspector, proceed to step 2.

If you are just starting out, to ensure that the Mobile Food Facility will meet requirements, it is strongly recommended to have an inspector perform a consultation inspection prior to purchasing or building any Mobile Food Facility.  Please note, it is unlawful to build a Mobile Food Facility without prior written approval from this office.

Prior to contacting our office for a consultation, please review the Mobile Food Facility operation and construction document pertaining to the type of unit planned to be operated to determine whether the Mobile Food Facility meets the requirements.

Please note, there is no fee for an initial consultation to determine what is required to meet health permitting requirements.

Once an inspector has determined that the Mobile Food Facility is eligible for health permitting, continue to step 2.

Step 2: Submit the permit application and supplemental forms

Complete and submit the following items:

1. Health permit application

2. Proposed menu and food service operations

3. Mobile Food Facility Commissary Review/Needs Assessment Form

All mobile food facilities must operate in conjuction with a commissary, mobile support unit, or other facility approved by Environmental Health Services to store all food and equipment and perform all food preparation activities. All mobile food facilities must report to the commissary on a daily basis for cleaning and servicing.

The commissary will be reviewed for approval by this department prior to granting a permit to operate. The proposed menu and food operations will determine the commissary needs of the mobile food facility operator. 

*Exemptions apply for mobile food facilities operating in conjunction with a permitted mobile support unit.  please contact our office at (805) 781-5544 for more information on mobile support unit permitting.

4. Commissary Use Agreement Form

A use agreement form completed and signed by both the permit holder of the commissary and the mobile food facility operator permit is required. Please note, if you are the permit holder for both the mobile food facility and the commissary, then this submission of a signed commissary form is not required.  Click here to visit our page on obtaining a food facility health permit for information on how to permit your commissary location.

5. Written Operational Procedures for Mobile Food Facility Operators

If your plan is to perform catering operations at off-site private or public events and/or direct sales from permitted host kitchen in addition to direct sales from the shared primary kitchen facility, then written standard operational procedures are required.

6. Restroom Use Agreement form

Mobile Food Facilities which stop at a single location for one hour or more are required to secure restroom facilities for use by employees.  A separate form is required for each location as applicable.

Step 3: Provide proof of food safety certification

  • All Mobile Food Facilities where nonprepackaged potentially hazardous foods are handled and/or served must have at least one owner or employee who has successfully passed a food safety certification course.


  • Proof of certification shall be provided upon request for a permit to operate or within 60 days of obtaining a permit to operate.


Step 4: Pay the health permit fee

The permit fee is due with the application.  Please refer to the Environmental Health Permit Fee Schedule for more information.

Step 5: Receive Written Approval To Begin Operation

After steps 1 - 4 have been completed, contact us to schedule an inspection. It is encouraged to have the inspection occur at the commissary or operating location, however, if this is not possible, other arrangements can be made.

Upon completion of a passing inspection, a permit sticker will be affixed to the exterior of the Mobile Food Facility.  Please note, it is unlawful to operate a Mobile Food Facility without the health permit sticker affixed to the exterior.  Additionally, a paper version of the health permit will be mailed out 2-4 weeks after payment has been made and approval to operate has been granted by the inspector.

Who can use this service?

This service is available to all businesses wishing to obtain an initial permit or renew a permit for a Mobile Food facility to be operated within San Luis Obispo County.

Is there a charge for this service?

Please refer to our Fee Schedule or contact our office at (805) 781-5544.

When and where is this service offered?

This service is available throughout the year during regular business hours except during scheduled holidays.

Please visit us, email us, contact us, or call our office to begin the process.

Location, directions and hours of operation

Click on location name to show hours of operation, directions and phone information

Environmental Health Supervisors

Leslie Terry

(805) 781-5553; [email protected]

  • Beach Water Quality, Cross-Connection, Land Use, Small Public Water Systems, Water Well Programs and Vector Programs

Aaron LaBarre

(805) 781-5595; [email protected]

  • Body Art, Food Protection, Swimming Pools and Spas.

Peter Hague 

(805) 781-5554; [email protected]

  • Hazardous Materials (CUPA) Programs