The Regional Municipality Of York

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Special Events, Farmers’ Markets and Wild Game Dinners

Community events are a great way to get out and see what York Region has to offer.

If you are operating a farmers’ market or inviting the public to a special event or a wild game dinner and are using the services of food vendors, personal service settings operators, such as tattoo artists or a petting zoo, you are required to inform York Region Public Health and comply with regulations and guidelines of the Health Protection and Promotion Act (HPPA). A York Region Public Health inspector will assess the market.

Farmers’ markets, where more than 50 per cent of vendors operating stalls are producers of farm products and primarily selling their own farmed food products, are exempt from the Ontario Food Premises Regulation 562, but must comply with the Health Protection and Promotion Act.

Wild game dinners are when wild fish or game are caught and served to the public at charitable events. It is important to note the event must be for charity with all profits from the event used for that purpose.

The following municipalities require special event permits. These are required before filling out York Region application forms.

Mandatory Food Handler Certification bylaw

York Region’s new Mandatory Food Handler Certification bylaw came into effect January 1, 2016. The bylaw requires all high and moderate risk food vendors who prepare and/or serve hazardous foods for special events to have a certified food handler on site at all times. A copy of certification must be available when requested during the event and at the time of application submission.

Effective January 1, 2018, York Region Public Health inspectors will begin enforcing the Mandatory Food Handler Certification bylaw for vendors at special events and farmers’ markets where less than 50 per cent of the vendors operating the stalls are producers of farm products.

A farmers’ market where the majority of vendors (greater than 50 per cent) operating the vending stalls are producers of farm products mostly selling their own farmed food products, are exempt from the Mandatory Food Handler Certification bylaw.

For more information on York Region’s Mandatory Food Handler Certification bylaw and how to get certified visit the Food Handler Certification Program or visit the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care for other equivalent courses.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Organizers

If you are the organizer of an event, farmers’ market or a wild game dinner, you are required to:

  • Complete the Organizer Application Event form
  • Inform your vendors that they need to fill out the Vendor Application Event form
  • Email/fax/drop off the Organizer Application Event form 30 days before the event

A public health inspector will contact you before the event.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Vendors

If you are the vendor at an event, farmers’ market or a wild game dinner, you are required to:

This form is for those who are selling food or providing personal services such as manicures, pedicures, tattooing and make-up application.

A public health inspector will contact you before the event.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Petting Zoos

If you are a petting zoo vendor, you are required to:

A public health inspector will contact you before the event.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Food Safety Event Guidelines

York Region has developed guidelines to assist event coordinators to prevent the risk of food-borne illness. The following required safe food-handling practices will help you plan a food-safe event.

Before planning an event, please ensure that the Organizer Application Event Form and Vendor Application Event Form are submitted to York Region Community and Health Services.

Inspected Source

  • Food for events needs to be from an inspected food premises.
  • An inspected source is food prepared at premises like supermarkets and bakeries
    Inspection reports can be reviewed at www.york.ca/YorkSafe
  • Food prepared from home is NOT acceptable.
  • Use precooked meats and meat products such as hamburgers and hotdogs. They are safer than raw products.
  • Hazardous food is food that can support bacterial growth, which has the potential to lead to outbreaks.
  • Use only grade A or B eggs. Never use Grade C or ungraded eggs.
  • Check meat and meat products for stamps and tags.
  • Keep receipts for proof of purchase.

Transporting Food

  • Transport food in coolers and insulated units to protect from contamination and to ensure that all food is maintained at proper temperatures.
  • All hazardous food items must not be in the Danger Zone 4°C (40°F) to 60°C (140°F). Cold food must be 4°C (40°F) or lower and hot food must be 60°C (140°F) or higher.
  • Storage thermometers are required in all cold/hot holding units to ensure food is not in the Danger Zone.

Correct Food Temperatures

  • A probe thermometer is required to check internal temperatures of hazardous food.
  • Ensure hazardous food is properly cooked to the appropriate internal cooking temperatures.
  • Keep cold food cold and hot food hot.
  • Do not use heat lamps for holding hot food items.
  • Covered chafing dishes can be used with sterno heaters (warming gel).

Internal Cooking Temperatures

Food Products Minimum internal cooking and reheating temperature

Ground poultry, poultry products

74°C (165°F)

Mixture containing two or more of these items: poultry, egg, meat, fish

74°C (165°F)

Hamburgers, pork, pork products & ground meat other than poultry

71°C (160°F)

Other hazardous food (beef, lamb, rice, seafood, etc.)

70°C (158°F)

Protecting Food

  • Cover food to protect it from contamination using food grade materials such as plastic containers with lids and aluminum trays with lids.
  • Separate raw from ready-to-eat food by using different work tables or surfaces to prevent cross-contamination.
  • Only single-service items such as paper plates and cups should be provided for use by customers.
  • Use utensils to handle food to minimize direct hand contact such as utensils for prepping, cooking and serving.
  • Condiment containers must have self-closing lids and separate dispensing utensils.


Proper Handwashing

  • A handwashing sink for food handlers must be in the food preparation area, along with water, liquid soap and paper towels.
  • At a minimum, temporary handwashing stations must consist of an insulated container with a spigot, providing a continuous flow of running water, liquid soap, paper towels and a bucket to collect waste water. The temporary handwashing station must be set up on an elevated surface such as a table or shelf.
  • Wastewater from the handwashing sink must be disposed of in a sanitary manner such as sewers or toilets, not on the ground or in recreational waters.
  • Hand sanitizers may be used but not as a replacement for proper handwashing.

Glove Use

  • Proper handwashing is preferred over glove use unless the food handler has a minor cut or burn.
  • Gloves should be used once and discarded after each task.
  • When changing tasks, remove and dispose of the gloves and wash your hands.

Dishwashing Equipment and Utensils

  • A two-compartment sink is highly recommended and should be used for washing and sanitizing all utensils used on-site. Wastewater must be disposed of in a sanitary manner.
  • Detergent soap supplies and approved sanitizer must be available. An approved sanitizer for the second sink, in the illustration above, can be made with approximately 2 ml ( ½ teaspoon) of household bleach mixed with 1 litre (4 cups) of water. An alternative to household bleach is quaternary ammonium, following manufacturer’s directions.
  • If dishwashing is not possible, ensure multiple sets of equipment and utensils are available.
  • Ensure clean and dirty equipment and utensils are kept separate.

The 2-Sink method of handwashing for pots, pans and cooking utensils consists of Sink 1 to wash using a clean detergent solution, then rinse with clean water at 43 degrees Celsius.  In Sink 2, sanitize dishes for at least 45 seconds.  Air dry.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

  • All surfaces must be cleaned and sanitized after use.
  • Cleaning means scrubbing with a detergent and water.
  • Sanitizing means using an approved sanitizer.
  • The sanitizing spray solution should be 5 ml (1 teaspoon) of household bleach mixed with 1 litre (4 cups) of water.
    • Keep the sanitizing spray solution in a container that is properly labelled and readily available.
    • The sanitizing spray must sit on surfaces for at least 45 seconds before wiping. Do not rinse surfaces after sanitizing. Once dried, this concentration of sanitizer will not harm food or individuals consuming the food.

Important Tips

  • Ensure fruits and vegetables are thoroughly washed.
  • Food handlers must follow good personal hygiene practices by washing hands often, wearing clean clothing and hair coverings.
  • Use sunshades or umbrellas to protect food from the sun and animal droppings.
  • Keep all food off the ground, including fruits and vegetables.
  • Ensure water comes from a safe drinking water source.
  • Adequate, durable, leak-proof garbage storage bins with lids must be readily available.
  • Have washroom facilities available, equipped with water, liquid soap and paper towels.
  • If the event continues after sundown, adequate lighting is required.
The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Wild Game Dinners for Charitable Events

If you are hosting a wild game dinner for charity, here is some important information:

  1. Complete both the organizer and vendor form and submit them at least five days prior to the event
  2. Keep a list of attendees of the event
  3. Keep a list of the donors of the wild game meat
  4. Keep wild game meat separate from inspected meat
  5. Notify all attendees that uninspected game meat will be served - the notice must be printed on each ticket and posted at a conspicuous place at the entrance to the venue where the event is held

For more information please visit the Ministry of Natural Resources.

The Regional Municipality of York en-US


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