Temporary Food Service


Temporary food service establishments are those that prepare and serve food for the public to purchase or consume and operate fewer than 14 days. This includes food operations at:

  • Festivals and fairs
  • Craft shows
  • Customer appreciation days


Temporary food operators in Kentucky, unless specifically exempted, must obtain a permit to operate and be inspected by the Health Department prior to opening.

In Northern Kentucky, the permit application and necessary fee must be submitted to the Health Department at least three business days prior to the event’s start date.

Application for a temporary permit: Word, PDF


To operate for 1 to 3 days $50
To operate for 4 to 7 days $75
To operate for 8 to 14 days $100


Learn more about the requirements for operating a temporary food service establishment.

Food from establishments licensed outside of Kentucky
Vendors with food service licenses in Ohio and Indiana often ask about bringing prepared food items in to Northern Kentucky to serve or sell. Out-of-state licensed restaurants need to supply a copy of their operating permit and last regular inspection when applying for a temporary food permit. For more information, contact RJ Beck or 859-363-2018.

More information

For more information, contact RJ Beck or 859-363-2018.

Application for a temporary permit: Word, PDF