Requirements for Temporary Food Stands


Temporary food establishments and farmers market potentially hazardous food licensees.

31.12(1) Personnel.
  1. Employees shall keep their hands and exposed portions of their arms clean.
  2. Employees shall have clean garments, aprons and effective hair restraints. Smoking, eating or drinking in food booths is not allowed. All nonworking, unauthorized persons are to be kept out of the food booth.
  3. All employees, including volunteers, shall be under the direction of the person in charge. The person in charge shall ensure that the workers are effectively cleaning their hands, that potentially hazardous food is adequately cooked, held or cooled, and that all multi-use equipment or utensils are adequately washed, rinsed and sanitized.
  4. Employees and volunteers shall not work at a temporary food establishment or farmers market potentially hazardous food establishment licensees if the employees and volunteers have open cuts, sores or communicable diseases. The person in charge shall take appropriate action to ensure that employees and volunteers who have a disease or medical condition transmissible by food are excluded from the food operation.
  5. Every employee and volunteer must sign a logbook with the employee’s or volunteer’s name, address, telephone number and the date and hours worked. The logbook must be maintained for 30 days by the person in charge and be made available to the department upon request.
31.12(2) Food handling and service.
  1. Dry storage. All food, equipment, utensils and single-service items shall be stored off the ground and above the floor on pallets, tables or shelving.
  2. Cold storage. Refrigeration units shall be provided to keep potentially hazardous foods at 41°F or below. The inspector may approve an effectively insulated, hard-sided container with sufficient coolant for storage of less hazardous food or the use of such a container at events of short duration if the container maintains the temperature at 41°F or below.
  3. Hot storage. Hot food storage units shall be used to keep potentially hazardous food at 135°F or above. Electrical equipment is required for hot holding, unless the use of propane stoves and grills capable of holding the temperature at 135°F or above is approved by the department. Sterno cans are allowed for hot holding if adequate temperatures can be maintained. Steam tables or other hot holding devices are not allowed to heat foods and are to be used only for hot holding after foods have been adequately cooked.
  4. Cooking temperatures. As specified in the following chart, the minimum cooking temperatures for food products are:


  • Poultry and game animals that are not commercially raised
  • Products stuffed or in a stuffing that contains fish, meat, pasta, poultry or ratite
  • All products cooked in a microwave oven


  • Rabbits, ratite and game meats that are commercially raised
  • Ground or comminuted (such as hamburgers) meat/fish products
  • Raw shell eggs not prepared for immediate consumption


  • Pork and raw shell eggs prepared for immediate consumption
  • Fish and other meat products not requiring a 155°F or 165°F cooking temperature as listed above
  1. Consumer advisory requirement. If raw or undercooked animal food such as beef, eggs, fish, lamb, poultry or shellfish is offered in ready-to-eat form, the license holder (person in charge) shall post the consumer advisory as required by the food code.
  2. Thermometers. Each refrigeration unit shall have a numerically scaled thermometer to measure the air temperature of the unit accurately. A metal stem thermometer shall be provided where necessary to check the internal temperature of both hot and cold food. Thermometers must be accurate and have a range from 0°F to 220°F.
  3. Food display. Foods on display must be covered. The public is not allowed to serve itself from opened containers of food or uncovered food items. Condiments such as ketchup, mustard, coffee creamer and sugar shall be served in individual packets or from squeeze containers or pump bottles. Milk shall be dispensed from the original container or from an approved dispenser. All fruits and vegetables must be washed before being used or sold. Food must be stored at least six inches off the ground. All cooking and serving areas shall be adequately protected from contamination. Barbeque areas shall be roped off or otherwise protected from the public. All food shall be protected from customer handling, coughing or sneezing by wrapping, sneeze guards or other effective means.
  4. Food preparation. Unless otherwise approved by a variance from the department, no barehand contact of ready-to-eat food shall occur.
  5. Approved food source. All food supplies shall come from a commercial manufacturer or an approved source. The use of food in hermetically sealed containers that is not prepared in an approved food processing plant is prohibited. Transport vehicles used to supply food products are subject to inspection and shall protect food from physical, chemical and microbial contamination.
  6. Leftovers. Hot-held foods that are not used by the end of the day must be discarded.
31.12(3) Utensil storage and warewashing.
  1. Single-service utensils. The use of single-service plates, cups and tableware is required.
  2. Dishwashing. If approved, an adequate means to heat the water and a minimum of three basins large enough for complete immersion of the utensils are required to wash, rinse and sanitize utensils or food-contact equipment.
  3. Sanitizers. Chlorine bleach or another approved sanitizer shall be provided for warewashing sanitization and wiping cloths. An appropriate test kit shall be provided to check the concentration of the sanitizer used. The person in charge shall demonstrate knowledge in the determination of the correct concentration of sanitizer to be used.
  4. Wiping cloths. Wiping cloths shall be stored in a clean, 100 ppm chlorine sanitizer solution or equivalent. Sanitizing solution shall be changed as needed to maintain the solution in a clean condition.
31.12(4) Water.
  1. Water supply. An adequate supply of clean water shall be provided from an approved source. Water storage units and hoses shall be food grade and approved for use in storage of water. If not permanently attached, hoses used to convey drinking water shall be clearly and indelibly identified as to their use. Water supply systems shall be protected against backflow or contamination of the water supply. Backflow prevention devices, if required, shall be maintained and adequate for their intended purpose.
  2. Wastewater disposal. Wastewater shall be disposed of in an approved wastewater disposal
    system sized, constructed, maintained and operated according to law.
31.12(5) Premises.
  1. Hand-washing container. An insulated container with at least a two-gallon capacity with a spigot, basin, soap and dispensed paper towels shall be provided for hand washing. The container shall be filled with hot water.
  2. Floors, walls and ceilings. If required, walls and ceilings shall be of tight design and weather-resistant materials to protect against the elements and flying insects. If required, floors shall be constructed of tight wood, asphalt, rubber or plastic matting or other cleanable material
    to control dust or mud.
  3. Lighting. Adequate lighting shall be provided. Lights above exposed food preparation areas shall be shielded.
  4. Food preparation surfaces. All food preparation or food contact surfaces shall be of a safe design, smooth, easily cleanable and durable.
  5. Garbage containers. An adequate number of cleanable containers with tight-fitting covers shall be provided both inside and outside the establishment.
  6. Toilet rooms. An adequate number of approved toilet and hand-washing facilities shall be provided at each event.
  7. Clothing. Personal clothing and belongings shall be stored at a designated place in the establishment, adequately separated from food preparation, food service and dishwashing areas.

These rules are intended to implement Iowa Code section 137F.7.