Student Organization Food FAQ

How do I start the approval process for my event with food?
Submit a University Event Authorization request online through the Student Activities Center.

We are having our event off campus; do we need to complete an form?
Yes. All student organization events on and off campus require approval through the Event Authorization process, with the exception of events only for your organization’s members, like weekly meetings.

What restaurants or caterers can we use for food at our event?
As a student organization you must use an approved caterer or vendor to serve food for your organization’s event. A list of the approved vendors and caterers is regularly updated.  Bake sales or events only for your organization’s members may be exceptions.

The vendor we want to use isn’t on the approved list.  Can we get them approved?
Absolutely!  If you have enough time before your event begins a new vendor can be approved.  Detailed vendor approval instructions are available.

What is the Food Sales and Service Form?
As a part of the online Event Authorization process, you will be asked to download, complete, and upload a Food Sales and Service Form to the system.  On the form you simply list the food items you will have at the event and what vendor you will be getting them from.  If your event is in the Memorial Union and you are having your event catered by ISU Dining, the Dining confirmation can substitute the food form in the Event Authorization System.

Can we do a potluck?
Yes, as long as the event is for your organization's members and not open to the general public.

What are the special rules for hosting a bake sale on campus?
Bake sales can be approved as long as the foods sold are not considered potentially hazardous and the items are labelled with their ingredients.  All bake sales need to be approve through the Event Authorization process.

Why can student organizations only sell food once per week?
Iowa State student organizations must adhere to the State of Iowa Food Code, and the code restricts the sale of food items on campus to only one day per week.  If you wish to sell food items more than one day per week, then your organization must do so as a part of a special event, and apply for and receive a Temporary Food License from the State of Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals.

Can our organization sell food more than once per week?
Yes, as long as the food sale is a part of a special event, and if you apply for and receive a Temporary Food License from the State of Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals.

We're having our event at the Memorial Union / Scheman Building / Alumni Center. Do they have different rules regarding food at events?
Yes. All events at the MU need to be catered by ISU Dining, and all events at Scheman need to be catered by their in-house caterer.  The Alumni Center has their own list of approved vendors which is different than the general Iowa State list. Be sure to work with the event managers at those venues for more information regarding their catering regulations.

What is SafeFood 101?
SafeFood 101 is a training put together by ISU Extension, the College of Human Sciences, and the Office of Risk Management that you must complete successfully before serving food at a student organization event.

How long is my SafeFood 101 training good for?
All SafeFood 101 cards expire in September, regardless of when you completed the training.  All students who serve food at events must complete the training annually.