General Application Process and Information

What to Know:

  • APPLICATIONS MUST BE SUBMITTED NO LATER THAN 15 DAYS PRIOR TO THE EVENT. Applications turned in later than 15 days prior to the event will not be accepted.
  • Applications must be completed in full to be fully evaluated. The checklist on the application shows the requirements needed for a complete application. Any application that is submitted without all of these elements will not be accepted. It is best to have all of these elements completed before submitting your application.
  • Once the application is submitted, the application will be reviewed. Any questions that are generated by the review process will be communicated to the applicant. Please ensure that the contact information (email, phone number) that are listed on the application are accurate and regularly monitored.
  • An EHS from our office will contact the applicant for each temporary food establishment and schedule a permitting time, typically on the first day of the event before the event begins.
    • Keep in mind, a permit will not be issued if all items on the checklist are not available or fully set up upon the scheduled permitting time.
  • If all items are compliant on the checklist, a permit will be issued.
    • Absolutely NO food prep can occur before the permit is issued.
  • TFE’s can operate up to 21 days, consecutive or not. If event is longer than 21 days, an additional application and permit will be required.
  • Domestic yard sales, auctions, flea markets, and farmer’s markets are not eligible for a temporary food establishment permit.

Exempt Food Vendors:

  • Non-profit organizations with a 501-C(3) Non-profit status form that operate no longer than 2 consecutive days 1 time each month.
  • Establishments regulated by North Carolina Department of Agriculture (cakes, funnel cakes, candy apples, snow cones, ice cream, etc.)
  • Permitted mobile food units (MFUs) that are able to return to their commissary daily for the duration of the event.

If you are a nonprofit food vendor, we ask that you please fill out this “TFE nonprofit application” and submit to

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