Experiences Involving Food in Miami
These information pages can help you get started in learning about some of the laws and registration requirements that may apply to your experiences on Airbnb. These pages include summaries of some of the rules that may apply to different sorts of activities, and contain links to government resources that you may find helpful.
Please understand that these information pages are not comprehensive, and are not legal advice. If you are unsure about how local laws or this information may apply to you or your Experience, we encourage you to check with official sources or seek legal advice.
Please note that we don’t update this information in real time, so you should confirm that the laws or procedures have not changed recently.*
What are some of the basic principles?
Your guest’s health and safety should always come first. For example, make sure you take your guests to (or otherwise serve them food from) reputable restaurants, food trucks, or professional caterers who keep clean facilities, use fresh ingredients, and have a good food safety track record. If your experience involves you cooking or handling food (including storing or serving food prepared by others), be sure you handle, prepare and serve food safely and with good sanitation. We encourage you to review the USDA’s tips for handling food safely. Also ask your guests in advance about any food allergies they may have, or religious or philosophical codes that may impact what kind of food they eat.
I’m a foodie. What kind of food experiences can I provide in Miami?
The following food experiences are unlikely to trigger any regulatory issues:
- Taking your guests to your favorite local restaurants or food trucks
- Inviting your guests to your home or a picnic where you serve food that is cooked in a licensed facility (for example, take-out from your favorite local restaurants, food catered by a professional licensed caterer).
If you’re thinking of serving home-cooked food, please carefully read our home-cooked food guidance and check with an attorney to make sure you are following your local laws.
I want to serve home-cooked food to guests visiting my home. Are there any specific rules I need to follow?
The key question is whether serving home-cooked food in your private home to occasional guests qualifies as a regulated activity under the Florida Lodging and Food Service Establishment law and the Florida Food Safety Act (“Florida Food Law").
According to the Florida Food Law, any “place" that serves or sells food to the public is a public food service establishment and should be permitted by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Division of Hotels and Restaurants (“DBPR").
DBPR has provided guidance that a personal chef who is hired to prepare and serve food in a private home and does no pre-preparation, brings in no equipment and doesn’t leave any leftover food does not need a license to do so. “Personal chefs" includes “individuals contracted to prepare and serve food at a private party". This suggests that:
- A Host can hire a personal chef to cook for a private party of guests who book in advance, or
- A Host cook and serve food in a private home to guests who book in advance.
That said, this is a tricky area and we encourage you to call the DBPR directly or speak to a lawyer to describe your Experience or Trip and make sure you are correctly interpreting this guidance and are following your local laws.
In addition, it’s clear that if the food you’re serving is a Cottage Food, you can serve it to your guests.
If you partner and co-host a food experience with a non-profit and donate all fees to that non-profit, it may fall under the non-profit exemption of Florida’s Food Law.
What is Cottage Food?
The Florida Food Safety Act was amended in 2011 to expressly clarify that non-perishable Cottage Food products made in home kitchens can be legally sold (both inside and outside the home) by cooks without a permit as long as certain requirements are met.
Can I donate the proceeds of home-cooked meals I co-host with a non-profit to that non-profit?
Hosts may be able to provide home-cooked meals for guests by partnering with non-profit organizations and donating all proceeds from the meal to the non-profit organization in two ways:
- The non-profit holds a temporary event (like a carnival, food drive, cook-off) where they serve food, and you happen to work for them, or
- You host a private dinner as a temporary event operated/co-hosted by the non-profit for the benefit of that non-profit.
While the exact meaning of these exemptions isn’t clear, they can be interpreted to mean that if Hosts partner with a no-profit to host a food experience and donate all their proceeds from that experience to the non-profit, they can host dinner parties without being at risk of being held subject to the Florida Food Law. If you want to host a dinner party in your home by partnering with a non-profit, we encourage you to speak to an attorney to make sure you are correctly interpreting this exemption.
I’m a great cook. Can I give cooking lessons for a fee to my guests?
If you want to teach a cooking lesson in a private home, please carefully read our guidance on home-cooked foods and speak to an attorney to make sure you are following your local laws.
Alternatively, you may consider giving a cooking lesson on Cottage Foods. From time to time, Airbnb may also partner with select non-profits who may either provide licensed food facilities for hosts or may otherwise sponsor a food related event.
*Airbnb is not responsible for the reliability or correctness of the information contained in any links to third party sites (including any links to legislation and regulations).
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