OLYMPIA, WA – An outdated health code regulation that required food trucks to do most of their food preparation in commissary kitchens is gone. With a house floor vote of 98-0 and a Senate floor vote of 49-0, the Washington State Food Truck Association got its first bill passed.
From an interview from king5.com Jen Gustin, owner of Boss Mama’s Kitchen, said the bill would cut her costs. Gustin lives in Puyallup but has to drive to her commissary in Tacoma before she can serve any food out of her truck.
This bill, sponsored by both Republicans and Democrats, allows a mobile food unit to be exempt from the state board of health or a local health jurisdiction requirement to operate from an approved commissary or servicing area if the following conditions are met:
- The mobile food unit contains all equipment and utensils needed for complete onboard preparation of an approved menu;
- The mobile food unit is protected from environmental contamination when not in use;
- The mobile food unit can maintain required food storage temperatures during storage, preparation, service, and transit;
- The mobile food unit has a dedicated handwashing sink to allow frequent handwashing at all times;
- The mobile food unit has adequate water capacity and warewashing facilities to clean all multi use utensils used on the mobile unit at a frequency specified in state board of health rules,
- The mobile food unit is able to store tools onboard needed for cleaning and sanitizing,
- All food, water, and ice used on the mobile food unit is prepared onboard or otherwise obtained from approved sources;
- Wastewater and garbage will be sanitarily removed from the mobile food unit following an approved written plan or by a licensed service provider; and
- The local health officer approves the menu and plan of operations for the mobile food unit.
According to Lori Johnson, Executive Director of the Washington State Food Truck Association, they have 2 food truck related bills planned for the next year and are currently looking for sponsors.