Food Trucks and Hot Dog Stands to Be Graded by L.A. Health Inspectors

These days, even the food truck isn’t safe from getting their grades posted for all to see. It used to be that when a food truck went into business, it was almost like an underground operation.

Sure, they had to have their health department inspections done just like everyone else. But let’s face it, food trucks where people buy everything from a skewer to a shwarma to a bagel with a shmear have never really been places where people would go and look for inspection information. The City of Los Angeles however is hoping to change that.

Letter Grades Required for Regular Restaurants

For those not familiar with the rules in Los Angeles, the city send around inspectors to check on the cleanliness and food safety of restaurants in the city. They then assign a letter grade to the restaurants. This must be conspicuously displayed in order for the establishment to continue to do business.

Shaming Restaurateurs into Doing the Right Thing

The idea is that restaurateurs will be shamed into keeping cleaner establishments in order to make sure that they don’t have to explain to worried customers why their restaurant ranked a C (The lowest grade possible. Any lower and they’d have to shut down before they could continue to function).

However, the rule has not been applied to mobile restaurants or food trucks, on the theory that it would be too much trouble for such establishments to comply with it. A recent vote by the city Board of Supervisors, however, may change all that.

Catering Trucks to Go First

If the plan is implemented, as expected, when the final vote on the ordinance comes up toward the end of October, the first group that would be subject to the new rules would be applied to full service catering trucks that offer more than just a hot dog on a bun. The trucks would have to let the city know about their routes and be prepared for surprise inspection visits.

Hot Dog Carts are on the Agenda As Well!

The final phase of the plan would see even the humble hot dog stands and other places offering things like churros subject to the rule. We do wonder where exactly the hot dog stand is going to post such a sign, given the miniscule size of their operations.

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