I am looking at starting a monthly fine food and craft market at a wine farm. The wine farm is keen, but I have to put the proposal together. Where can I get more information with regards to what kind of license I need with regards to food and liquor? Do I need to get an electrical contractor, structural engineer and the fire chief etc. to check the premises or would the venue have to do that?
To your question about getting more information with regards to the type of licenses you may need for food and liquor we have the following advice for you. For the food license there are different requirements depending upon whether the food will be prepared onsite or if it will be pre-packed.
- Preparing food onsite – you will need a health and safety certificate from your local municipality. This usually involves a visit from the local health inspector and when everything is in order they’ll issue a legal document.
- Pre-packed food – you will also require a health and safety certificate. Check the local municipal bylaws whether you’re allowed to do this and which requirements need to be complied with.
For the liquor license, you’ll have to clarify whether you’re planning to only sell wines from the farm or if you’ll be selling other products such as beer and spirits as well. The two will have different outcomes.
- If you sell wine only – you will not require a liquor license as you’ll be covered by the estates’ liquor license. It’s important that you check with your local authorities what municipal laws and bylaws govern your area as liquor licences vary.
- Selling more products i.e. spirits and beers – you have to apply for your own liquor licence – the local municipality will assist with the application.
To answer the question about getting the services of an electrical contractor, structural engineer and the fire chief to check the premises or if it’s the responsibility of the venue.
If you’re making use of an existing structure on the farm you’ll be covered by any existing certificates for fire, structure and electrical. However, if you’re planning to build a new structure on the premises, it has to be approved by the local municipal building inspector. The new building will have to be approved for structural, fire and electrical.
Always check with the local authorities on municipal laws and bylaws governing these activities.