Events involving food must have an E-Plan on file. When the E-Plan is initiated, ASI Club Services will provide the club with contact information for both departments and will notify the club of the pending event.

For most events held on campus where food will be available, the food must be ordered from University Catering or an approved caterer.

How would you like to serve food at your event?

We would like to use Campus Dining.

We would like to use an approved vendor.

A current list of university approved caterers can be found on Administration & Finance-Procurement Services. If a club wishes to use an off-campus caterer, complete a Waiver.

We would like to prepare and serve the food ourselves.

All events on campus involving food must follow the Campus Food Services Policy.

In addition, an application and orientation provided by Environmental Health and Safety is required. Waiver

Safe Food Handling Tips

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water (between 100 - 108 degrees F) at least 30 seconds. Hands should be washed:
    • After engaging in other activities that contaminate the hands
    • Before dispensing/serving food or handling clean tableware/serving utensils
    • Before donning gloves to work with food
    • When switching between working with raw food and working with ready-to-eat food
    • During food preparation, to prevent cross-contamination and remove debris
    • After handling soiled equipment or utensils
    • After coughing, sneezing, using a handkerchief/tissue, using tobacco, eating, or drinking
    • After caring for or handling any animal
    • After using the restroom
    • After touching any part of your body other than clean hands (hair, face, etc.)
  2. Change utensils, gloves, and dishes when changing functions. Especially from handling or preparing raw or fresh foods to serving fresh or cooked foods.
    • Serve grilled food on a clean plate, not one that held raw meat, poultry or fish.
    • Ensure utensils used to prepare raw foods are sanitized prior to using on cooked or ready-to-eat foods. This includes cutting boards, prep knives and prep utensils.
  3. Sanitize the food preparation area. Use 1 tablespoon chlorine bleach in 1-gallon warm water (75F). Use paper towels during prep, serving and clean up.
  4. Avoid Cross-Contamination:
    • Have one person serve. Keep unused foods, condiments, marinades, sauces and drinks separate from leftover foods.
    • Do not serve or store foods in unsanitary containers.
    • Do not store any food in laboratory refrigerators or freezers.
    • Keep long hair under control. Wear a hairnet or tie your hair back.
    • Do not have volunteers serving or preparing food. Send them home.
  5. Maintain safe temperatures for potentially hazardous foods or don't serve them.
    • Keep hot foods hot (140° F or above)
    • Use warming plates or trays. Keep cold foods cold (41° F or below).
    • Use ice chests or other cooling devices to keep food cold. Campus Catering department offers a service to assist groups to comply with food temperature requirements.
    • Contact Catering Services for more information. Don't serve raw or partially cooked meat, poultry, fish and eggs.
  6. Never leave hot or cold food out for over four hours. Hot or cold foods left out for over four hours must be discarded.
  7. Throw away potentially hazardous foods that are out of safe temperature ranges longer than four hours. Potentially hazardous foods support the rapid growth of disease-causing bacteria when these foods are kept out of safe temperature ranges. Time and temperature controlled (TTC) foods include:
    • Raw and cooked high protein foods such as meats, poultry, fish, dairy and milk products.
    • Cooked high carbohydrate foods such as pasta, beans, rice, potatoes, soups and sauces.
    • Sprouts and sprout seeds, cut melons, and cut tomatoes.
    • Cooked vegetables
    • Other TTC includes warm iced tea from bacteria found in tea leaves.
  8. Serve low protein, dry high carbohydrate and high acidity foods that are not potentially hazardous. These foods include:
    • Tortilla Chips
    • Nuts
    • Prepackaged salads and vegetable
  9. Leftovers? When in doubt toss it out. Refrigerate or freeze leftovers promptly in small containers.
  10. Immediately after the event, seal all food garbage in plastic garbage bags and dispose of the bags in a dumpster.

Our food will be served only to our club members. It is closed to the public.

If you are serving food for your event, you do not have to fill out a hospitality form because it is open only to club/organization members. Food can be purchased from campus dining or from vendors inside or outside the approved vendors list. It's up to you.

Our food will be donated.

If a vendor is willing to donate food for an event, a Request for Donation form (which can be obtained at the University Catering office located next to The Avenue) must be submitted to the University Catering office a minimum of two weeks prior to the event for approval. Donated products must be delivered directly to University Catering and meet safety and health standards. For further information about campus food policies, visit University Catering. All events on campus involving food must follow the Campus Food Services Policy

For more information, visit the Campus Food Services Policy page.

Alcohol at Club Events

Alcoholic beverages are not to be served at off-campus functions by officially recognized Cal Poly Clubs except when private service (i.e., for members and guests) is arranged by contract with a properly licensed third-party vendor. Club members may not serve or provide the alcohol themselves. Individuals at the club event must purchase their drinks directly from the third-party vendor, leaving the club completely out of the alcohol transaction. The facility or caterer must have a valid Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) license in order for the event to be approved. If a club is hosting an event at a location that does not already provide alcohol and an outside entity is hired to serve alcohol, the following is required:

  • Contract with a licensed vendor
  • E-Plan
  • Proof that the vendor has an ABC license
  • IRS Form W-9 for the vendor

In addition, each event must provide for the availability of popular non-alcoholic beverages for those persons less than 21 years of age. Students of legal age while attending an off-campus university approved activity in the vicinity of a public bar may not have their rights denied except by representatives of the licensee or by civil law enforcement authorities for cause. If alcohol is available at an off-campus event, it must be noted on the E-Plan. In addition, any event involving alcohol at an off campus location may require a meeting with The Dean of Students Office prior to the event taking place. If a meeting is necessary, a representative from The Dean of Students Office will contact a club officer to schedule the meeting.

Under no circumstances may club funds be used to purchase alcohol or to reimburse an individual for the purchase of alcohol (or purchase gift cards from companies that sell alcohol). For more information on alcohol at off-campus events, please refer to the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities.
(See Cal Poly’s Alcohol Policy regarding on and off campus use, service, sale and consumption for more detailed information)

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