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Plan to sell food to eclipse visitors? You probably need a license

OHA wants pop-up vendors to contact county health, get inspected

As the state prepares to welcome an estimated 1 million visitors planning to watch the solar eclipse later this month, the Oregon Health Authority is encouraging prospective temporary food vendors to first check with county health departments about licensing requirements.

OHA officials say a number of counties have expressed concern that these so-called “pop-up” vendors, which may be planning to provide food services at or near sites where eclipse viewers are gathered, may not be aware that licenses are required by law. When these facilities aren't licensed, they aren't inspected by county health departments, and that puts the public at risk of foodborne illness.

“We want residents and visitors to Oregon to enjoy the eclipse and events associated with it,” said Dave Martin, coordinator for the OHA Public Health Division’s Food, Pool & Lodging Health and Safety Programs. “To help ensure that, potential food vendors need to contact their local health department about any license requirements. That way the county is aware of their operation and can issue a license and inspect them to make sure they are following state food-safety standards.”

Martin encouraged people who might buy food from a vendor to be cautious and ask questions. If in doubt, ask the vendor to see their health department license.

To reach a county health department in Oregon, visit OHA’s directory. Those interested in operating a food stand, see OHA’s video about pop-up food vendors.

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 Media contact

Jonathan Modie

OHA External Relations


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