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Guidance for Shared Kitchens Food Manufacturers

Renting space from a shared kitchen?

Here is some information you should know!

 

All businesses operating out of a shared kitchen are required to be separately licensed and inspected, meaning they are not permitted to work under the main shared kitchen’s business license. Here’s how to obtain your license:

CATERERS

If you are a caterer, meaning you use the shared kitchen to prepare meals for specific off-site events, you will be required to obtain a Caterer License from the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA). In order to obtain your license, you will need to first be inspected by DC Health. To schedule an inspection, simply email [email protected] with the following information:

  • Name of business owner
  • Name of business (trade name)
  • Address of shared kitchen
  • Your contact email
  • Your contact phone number
  • Type of foods you will prepare at the shared kitchen
  • The certificate of occupancy of your shared kitchen

Some operations may require HACCP Plans or Variance Requests. Please review the regulations to learn more.

 

FOOD MANUFACTURERS

If you are a food manufacturer, meaning you process and package food items for retail or wholesale, you must fill out the Food Manufacturer Application (see below) to work from a shared kitchen space.  Submit the completed application to [email protected] and we will review the application within thirty (30) days. Some operations may require HACCP Plans or Variance Requests. We will contact you upon initial review of your application if such items are required for your operation.

Food manufacturing operations will also receive a Caterer License from DCRA. This license category is currently the most applicable for this type of food operation. The difference between Catering and Food Manufacturing is the wholesaling/retailing aspect of your operation. If you wholesale to other stores to sell your food product for you, or if you package food items to sell at markets or over the internet, you are a food manufacturer. Contact us for more information on food manufacturers if you have any questions.

MOBILE FOOD VENDORS

You do not need a separate business license to use the shared kitchen as your depot. You will need to obtain a vending license from DCRA. If you are a mobile food vendor and use a shared kitchen as your depot/support facility, you will need to submit an application to DC Health for a Mobile Food Vending Unit. The owner of the shared kitchen/support facility must sign and date your application indicating you are using their shared kitchen as your depot. Remember every six months, you will need to submit a renewal application for your Mobile Vending Health Certificate. Any questions should be submitted to [email protected]. Some operations may require HACCP Plans or Variance Requests. We will contact you upon initial review of your application if such items are required for your operation.

Questions? Contact us at [email protected] or (202) 535-2180