Mobile Food Vendors and Mobile Food Trucks

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A Mobile Food Vendor/Mobile Food Truck Application must be fully completed, administratively processed and approved before a permit can be issued.  Requirements and fee information are provided on the application.  

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Mobile Food Vendors and Mobile Food Trucks are defined by Section 185.006 of the Palm Bay Code of Ordinances as follows:

MOBILE FOOD VENDOR is a person who prepares, dispenses, or otherwise sells food from a Mobile Food Truck.

MOBILE FOOD TRUCK is a vehicle, including trailers and other conveyances, used to vend food and/or beverage product classified as follows:

Class I—Mobile kitchens. In addition to the vending of products allowed for class II and class III mobile food trucks, these vehicles may cook, prepare and assemble food items in the unit and serve a full menu.

Class II—Canteen trucks. These vehicles vend fruits, vegetables, hot dogs, pre-cooked foods, pre-packaged foods and pre-packaged drinks. No preparation or assembly of foods or beverages may take place on or in the vehicle, however, the heating of pre-cooked foods is allowed. A cooking apparatus or grill top for the heating of pre-cooked foods is permitted so long as it complies with state regulations.

Class III—Ice cream trucks. These vehicles vend only pre-packaged frozen dairy or frozen water-based food products, soft serve or hand-dipped frozen dairy products or frozen water-based food products and pre-packaged beverages. If vending in the street (right of-way) only, a Mobile Vending permit does not apply. Please contact the City to obtain a Business Tax Receipt (BTR).


Requirements

The requirements established by Section 185.138 must be met to obtain a Mobile Vending/Mobile Food Truck Permit:

(A)   Mobile Food Vending as defined in Section 185.006 shall be allowed within the CC–Community Commercial, HC–Highway Commercial, BMU–Bayfront Mixed Use, and LI–Light Industrial zoning districts as provided for in this section.

(B)   Specific Requirements.

  1. The Mobile Food Vendor as defined in Section 185.006 shall have the consent of the property owner(s) prior to applying for the location for a Mobile Food Vendor permit.

  2. Any person engaged in selling, preparing, or dispensing food from a Mobile Food Truck as defined in Section 185.006 shall obtain a Mobile Food Vending permit from the Growth Management Department in accordance with the Mobile Vending Guidebook.

  3. A City of Palm Bay Business Tax Receipt is required to operate as a Mobile Food Vendor.

  4. The Mobile Food Vendor shall provide copies of all applicable approvals and licenses from the State of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations (DBPR), Florida Department of Health, and Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

  5. The Mobile Food Vendor shall make the Mobile Food Truck available for inspection by the City of Palm Bay Fire Department at a location determined by the Fire Department.  The Fire Department shall ensure compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local fire safety statutes, regulations, ordinances, and codes.  Subsequently, every Mobile Food Truck shall undergo bi-annual inspection by the City of Palm Bay Fire Department.

  6. All Mobile Food Vendors shall display the Mobile Food Truck permit issued by the City in a prominent and visible location.

  7. Training prior to performing mobile or temporary cooking operations, workers shall be trained in emergency response procedures.

  8. Initial and refresher training shall be documented and made available to the inspector upon request.

  9. Mobile food venders shall comply with all requirements of National Fire Protection Association most current adopted edition by the Florida Administrative Code 69A (NFPA) 1 Chapter 50 Mobile and Temporary Cooking Operations

 (C)   Mobile Food Vendors operating a Mobile Food Truck are prohibited from the following:

  1. Selling or distributing alcoholic beverages.

  2. Serving food from a free-standing barbecue grill.

  3. Operating on a public right-of-way, driveway, driveway aisle, loading zone, or no parking zone.

  4. Operating in a fire lane or blocking fire hydrants or any other fire protection devices and equipment, or Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible parking spaces and/or accessible ramps.

  5. A Mobile Food Vendor may not place a Mobile Food Truck in a location that will impede on-site circulation of motor vehicles.

  6. Operating in a City park or on City property, except as permitted by a city-sanctioned event or activity.

  7. Operating in a residentially zoned and/or residential portion of a mixed-use zoning district, except as permitted by a city-sanctioned event or activity.

  8. Operating on unimproved surfaces and abandoned or vacant business locations.

  9. Use of sound amplification regardless of intended purpose.

  10. Using balloons, banners, streamers, large flashing lights, or other similar devices to attract customers.

  11. Selling or dispensing food to customers in a moving vehicle or otherwise engaging in drive-up sales.

 (D)   General Requirements

  1. Mobile Food Vendors shall remove all waste and trash prior to vacating their location.

  2. Under no circumstances shall grease or any waste materials be released into the stormwater system, tree pits, sidewalks, streets, parking lots, or private/public property.  Mobile Food vendors shall be responsible to properly discard any waste material in accordance with federal, state, county, municipal, or any laws, rules, regulations, orders, or permits.

  3. In accordance with the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation guidelines, all necessary control measures shall be used to effectively minimize, or eliminate when possible, the presence of rodents, roaches, and other vermin and insects on the premises of all Mobile Food Trucks.  Each Mobile Food Vendor shall maintain a log containing a written record of the control measures performed by exterminators or other pest control businesses on the Mobile Food Truck.  This log shall be open to inspection by the City.

  4. Mobile Food Vendors shall not engage in food preparation if the vehicle does not provide water and waste systems as required by the Florida Department of Business and Professional regulation or otherwise fails to meet sanitation and safety requirements.

  5. All food service equipment utilized by the Mobile Food Vendor shall be maintained in good repair and a clean condition.

  6. Routine inspections may be conducted by code enforcement inspectors, building code inspectors, fire inspectors, or police officers on each Mobile Food Truck at any time and at any frequency deemed appropriate by the City.

 (E)   Operating Requirements

  1. Mobile Food Vendors may not operate in a stationary manner for more than 12 consecutive hours.

  2. Mobile Food Vendors shall be permitted to operate between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m., except as permitted by a city-sanctioned event or activity.

  3. Mobile Food Trucks shall be self-contained when operating, except for the required trash and/or recycling receptacles that shall be attached to the Mobile Food Truck and shall not impede free movement of automobiles or pedestrians.

  4. No more than two Mobile Food Trucks shall operate on any property at any one time, except as may be permitted by a special event permit issued by the City.

  5. In addition to the location of the Mobile Food truck, one (1) 10-foot x 10-foot area, covered or uncovered, may be permitted to accommodate seating and tables.

  6. One (1) 10-foot x 10-foot tent may be utilized to cover the seating area in (E)(5).

  7. Mobile Food Trucks shall be operated only by the Mobile Food Vendor or by an authorized employee of the vendor.

  8. If at any time the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation revokes or suspends the Mobile Food Vendor’s license, the City’s Mobile Food Truck permit shall be deemed to have been simultaneously revoked or suspended.