We Want to Know

Q: What are the state rules and regulations for lunch wagons?

A: You may have noticed the establishment of a lunch wagon at ‘Opaeka‘a Falls along Kuamo‘o Road recently. When the wagon first opened, it was parked in the empty grass area near the main road, but as time passed it slowly began moving closer to the restroom facility at the park, to the point where it is now located right next to the facility. Because the restroom facility is not quite sanitary, we wanted to know rules and regulations regarding operation of lunch wagons. A lunch wagon, according to state law, is a mobile food establishment, and is defined to be “a vehicle-mounted food establishment capable of being readily moved that operates in conjunction with a commissary.” The commissary may not be a private home kitchen, and must be approved by officials with the state Department of Health. All mobile food establishments must return to the commissary at least once each operational day for cleaning and servicing. The commissary shall be used for: storage of food, equipment, utensils and supplies. Food preparation is permitted on the mobile food establishment. Cleaning and sanitation of multi-use equipment and utensils, and the draining, cleaning and filling of portable water tanks, are to be done daily. Because of the detail in which these rules and regulations are stated, these are just general rules for mobile food establishments that must be met. Other regulations, such as those regarding food handling, are the same as for regular food establishments, only those stated in this article vary. For more detailed rules and regulations, please visit the state Department of Health’s Web site, www.hawaii.gov/health, and view Chapters 11 and 12. As for the rules and regulations on the location in which the cart may be parked, we were unable to find specifics.

If you have a question you would like to see Marissa Agena, editorial assistant, find the answer to, please phone or e-mail it in to Paul C. Curtis, associate editor, 245-3681 (ext. 224) or pcurtis@kauaipubco.com.

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