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Food Policy

Responsible Office: Vice President for Student Affairs

Policy Type: Security and Safety

Policy Number: 856

Last Date Revised:  8/01/19

Policy Objectives: This policy is being implemented to ensure that food is served to the Binghamton University community with a primary concern for safety and to outline the responsibilities for the University in providing and approving food and beverage services, recognizing contractual obligations and limitations agreed to by the University and associated contractors. The Binghamton University campus community must adhere to the standards developed in this policy to ensure safe compliance.

Binghamton University contracts the food service operation with a campus dining partner, known as Binghamton University Dining Services (BUDS), to provide food service on campus owned and leased properties. All food and beverages served on campus must be provided through BUDS, with limited exceptions, such as an event where food and beverage cost totals under $200.00, or in the case where specialty food or support of local establishments is in the best interest of the University. Exceptions over $200 must be approved by BUDS through the use of a Request for Waiver for BUDS-provided Food and Beverage. 

This policy does not restrict an individual from purchasing food and non-alcoholic beverage products from local off-campus outlets and bringing the product to campus for individual use. 

Accountability: Binghamton University Auxiliary Services (BUAS), reporting through the Division of Student Affairs, has the primary responsibility for the oversight, appeals process and periodic review of the policy, with assigned campus stakeholders as partners to ensure campus compliance.

I. Public Tabling Events: Public tabling is permitted on campus by recognized university organizations and/or individuals directly associated with the campus (i.e. students, faculty, and staff). Food items, either sold or given away must be pre-packaged and/or low risk food items. Completed public tabling requests involving food must meet stated criteria and must be approved by the appropriate building management by following the Procedure for Requesting Permission to Table on Campus.

II. Use of Off-Campus Food Vendors: In rare cases, BUDS may determine that they are unable to provide the requested service, or the University through BUAS may determine that specialty food or support of local establishment is the best interest of the University, and a waiver may be issued to permit the use of an outside vendor. This includes food donated for the purposes of consumption on campus. Refer to the Off Campus Vendor Request for Catered Events Form for additional information. In addition, non-University food trucks are not permitted on the Binghamton University campus except for specified University events which may include Spring Fling and University Fest. All requests for external campus food vendors, once approved, must meet stated criteria, and must follow the Procedure for Requesting Use of Off-Campus Food Vendors.

III. Exclusive Contract for Beverages and Snacks: In addition to the exclusive campus food service provider, BUAS has exclusive contracts for Vending and Pouring Rights. These contracts preclude sales, samplings, promotions and distribution of brands provided by any vendor other than the University’s contracted and authorized vendor.

IV. Cultural, Unique and Specialty Food Events: BUDS acknowledges and supports recognized university organizations and/or individuals who may seek the opportunity to utilize an on-campus kitchen facility to prepare specialty foods for an event. Authorized Cultural, Unique and Specialty Food Events must meet the stated criteria below, and must be approved by BUDS by following the Procedure for Obtaining Permission to Utilize On-Campus Kitchen Facility.

One such example is the Kosher Kitchen located in the Chenango Champlain Collegiate Center Dining Hall designed for students wishing to observe the kosher laws of Kashruth. It provides a full service Meat and Dairy kitchen which is certified and overseen by the Orthodox Union.

V. Public Outdoor Events: Events for which food is prepared outside of a residence hall or a Binghamton University Dining Services facility, with the exception of tailgating associated with sanctioned University events, must meet the stated criteria below, and must be approved by BUDS by following the Procedure for Obtaining Approval of Public Outdoor Dining Events.

VI. University Employees Offering Food in Offices: For social gatherings of 30 people or less, food items may be provided by University employees for sharing with their co-workers in their department or office provided Procedure for Offering Food in Offices criteria for the event is met. 

VII. Social Gatherings Involving Food in Residential Life Facilities: Social gatherings/events in Residential Halls, as part of Residential Life programming, may be exempt from the requirement to use BUDS, provided the Procedure for approval of food at Social Gatherings in Residential Halls criteria for the event is met.

VIII. Alcohol at Events: The Binghamton University Alcohol Policy regulates the service of alcoholic beverages on the campus. It is the responsibility of any individual or group coordinating an event to review the Binghamton University Alcohol Policy to ensure compliance. 

IX. Food Policy Violations: The intent of the Binghamton University Food Policy is to keep the campus community safe from avoidable and/or undue risk. A violation of this policy is considered serious and privileges may be revoked for failure to comply. 

All violations will be referred to the appropriate campus department for review and will be addressed pursuant to applicable university policies and procedures. For employees, this may include referral to HR for appropriate action. For students, this may include charges under the Code of Student Conduct and sanctions up to and including suspension or expulsion from the University.  An appeals process is established to assist recognized university organizations and/or individuals with the intent to educate all community members on the Binghamton University Food Policy and enforce procedures related to the safety, handling, and preparation of food and beverages served or given away on the Binghamton University campus. 

Policy and enforce procedures related to the safety, handling, and preparation of food and beverages served or given away on the Binghamton University campus.

X. Examples and Definitions: 

  1. Appropriate Approver: approver with authority, responsibility and accountability for the act of approving.
  2. Approval: final permission, or acknowledgment from appropriate approver.
  3. Campus: Binghamton University owned and leased properties. 
  4. Low Risk Foods: food that does not require a specific holding temperature of heat or refrigeration. Some examples of Low Risk-Foods include: Candy, chips, cookies, whole fruit; Non-cream filled baked products; chocolate; canned or bottled beverages.

    For more information on Low Risk-Foods, please refer to the https://www.agriculture.ny.gov/FS/consumer/FSI-898D_Home_Processor.pdf.    
  5. Pre-Packaged Foods: commercially produced food that is packaged before being put on sale or given away and cannot be altered without opening or changing the packaging.
  6. Satellite Locations: including but not limited to ITC, Downtown Center, Pharmacy School, Nursing School, etc.
  7. Student Organization: means the Student Association at Binghamton University, the Graduate Student Organization at Binghamton University, the Office of Fraternity & Sorority Life, the University Student Organization Recognition Committee and their respectively recognized groups.
  8. University-Affiliated Organization: means the Research Foundation at Binghamton University, BU Foundation, Alumni Association, BASC, contracted organizations or other entity so designated by the President.

XI. Contact Information:

Forms / Instructions: 

Request for Catered Event: Catering website

Request for Waiver of BUDS-provided Food and Beverages: Off Campus Vendor Request for Catered Events Form

Food Policy Waiver of Liability Form: Auxiliary Services website

Related Policies / Procedures:

Appendix A. Binghamton University Food Policy Procedures

The following section describes the procedures for obtaining approval to serve and distribute food in a safe manner at all University-owned and operated locations.  All space managers, and/or individuals who approve events for campus locations, are responsible for ensuring requestors are in compliance with the Food Policy.

I. Procedure for Requesting Permission to Table on Campus:

  1. Tabling locations on the Binghamton University campus include the University Union through the Union office and Glenn G. Bartle Library  through the Multicultural Resource Center (MRC);
  2. A public tabling event may be requested by a recognized university organization and/or individual (faculty, staff, and student) with prior approval from the appropriate office and/or department by completing a request through the B There website;
  3. Food items, either sold or given away, must be Pre-Packaged foods only (See Definition of Pre-Packaged Foods) OR must be Low Risk-Foods only (See Definition of Low Risk-Foods);
  4. If the food item, either sold or given away, is prepared from home, it must be clearly labeled that “This food has been home prepared and has not been inspected”;
  5. The recognized university organization and/or individual serving Pre-Packaged Foods and/or Low Risk-Foods must take all precautions necessary to ensure that the product is reasonably protected from contamination by using gloves, serving utensils and covers. Precautions are detailed in the Request to Table on Campus. See NYS Department of Health website or contact BUDS for more information on proper handling of Low Risk Foods;
  6. An 8x11 or larger sign must be clearly displayed if the food items, either sold or given away, contain any of the 8 major allergens which include:  Milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soy;
  7. The recognized university organization and/or individual understands that the liability and responsibility for complying with policy and food service health and safety laws is assumed by the requestor. 

II. Procedure for Requesting Use of Off Campus Food Vendors:

  1. An Off Campus Vendor Request for Catered Events Form must be completed and approved.
  2. Approved Off Campus Food Vendors must present current, valid proof of the following for a request to be considered:
    1. General Liability Certificate of Insurance, documenting the following information: 
      • Naming the State University of New York as the certificate holder;
      • $1,000,000 individual and $2,000,000 aggregate coverage as minimum.
    2. Food service permit/certificate for Binghamton University from the County Health
      Department;
      1. Valid New York State Business License;
      2. Automobile and Property Damage Liability of $1,000,000 per occurrence; 
    3. Proof of Worker’s Comprehensive Insurance Coverage per New York State Minimums;
    4. The University must be provided with the declarations page of the policy and the endorsement page which must indicate the required coverage for all applicable insurance; 
  3. Food items, either sold or given away, which are provided by an off-campus food vendor within a 75-mile radius from the University must be transported directly by the vendor; and delivery arrangements must receive prior approval from BUDS. Additional criteria that must be met include:
    • Transported food items must meet all safety standards;
    • BUDS agrees to take temperature of all food that is delivered with sufficient notice, and food may be refused if deemed unsafe to be served based on current food handling protocol;
    • Off campus food vendor must sign and acknowledge product meets all health and safety standards upon delivery;
  4. An 8x11 or larger sign must be clearly displayed if the food items, either sold or given away, contain any of the 8 major allergens which include: Milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soy.

III. Procedure for Obtaining Permission to Utilize On-Campus Kitchen Facility:

  1. Requested events cannot interfere with normal operations of BUDS. Requests for dates during Homecoming, Family Weekend, Commencement and other major University events will not be permitted;
  2. Fifteen (15) business days of advanced notice of the event is required to review menu and recipes;
  3. Approval can be obtained by completing a Permission to Utilize On-Campus Kitchen Facility form found on the Dining Services website. BUDS Student Kitchen Use Request Form.

    Review the Catering website for more information on forms, documents and services provided.

If approved: 

  1. A Waiver of Liability form must be signed by all who participate. Individuals must follow all instructions given by the BUDS staff which includes dress and sanitation practices required by New York State related to food preparation and clean-up;
  2. All food preparation and service will be under the direct supervision of the BUDS staff. See fee schedule for services provided. Levels of service and personnel necessary to support food preparation and service will be determined on a case by case basis by BUDS;
  3. Recognized university organizations and/or individuals will provide BUDS with an accounting code which will be directly billed, including but not limited to: ingredients, kitchen/serving equipment; staffing, cleaning and other requirements deemed necessary by BUDS;
  4. Requestor must stay through the event preparation and clean-up until the BUDS staff approves the work is complete; Future permission to utilize BUDS facilities is contingent upon complying with the above criteria;
  5. All potentially hazardous or Time Temperature Controlled Safety products must be purchased through BUDS;
  6. Resale of food produced in the on-campus kitchen by recognized university organizations and/or individuals is prohibited for any commercial or individual gain;
  7. Although not required, it is strongly advised that any individual and/or members of requesting organization be Serve Safe Certified prior to using BUDS kitchen facilities. More information can be found on the Serve Safe website

IV. Procedure for Obtaining Approval of Public Outdoor Dining Events:

  1. The recognized university organization and/or individual must obtain prior event approval from the appropriate office and/or department.
  2. BUDS provides all prepared food items to be sold or given away, or waiver granted;
  3. An approved hand wash station is supplied by the requestor;
  4. Environment Health & Safety (EH&S) provides the necessary safety checks for all appropriate supplies. Review the EH&S website for more information on forms, documents and services provided.
  5. The recognized university organization and/or individual serving Pre-Packaged Foods and/or Low Risk Foods must take all precautions necessary to ensure that the product is reasonably protected from contamination by using gloves, serving utensils. See NYS Department of Health website or contact BUDS for more information on proper handling of Low Risk Foods;
  6. An 8x11 or larger sign must be clearly displayed if the food items, either sold or given away, contain any of the 8 major allergens which include:  Milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soy;
  7. Policies highlighted under tabling, and the usage of off campus food vendors are also applicable; limited exceptions to the policy may include large-scale University approved events i.e. Homecoming Tailgate, Spring Fling and University Fest. 

V. Procedure for Offering Food in Offices: 

  1. An authorized member of a recognized university organization and/or department signs and returns a Waiver of Liability form that food will be provided and assumes all responsibility;
  2. All precautions are met to ensure all food products are reasonably protected from unsanitary handling or contamination by the usage of gloves, tongs and covers;
  3. There is an explicit understanding that each employee is responsible for the wholesomeness of the food items provided.

VI. Procedure for approval of food at Social Gatherings in Residential Halls:

  1. An authorized member of a recognized university organization and/or department signs and returns a Waiver of Liability form that food will be provided and assumes all responsibility;
  2. Event food cost is under $200.00; if cost exceeds $200.00, BUDS must be given first right of refusal to cater the event;
  3. Recognized university organizations and/or individuals serving food utilizing an outside vendor must abide by Section II of this policy;
  4. Recognized university organizations and/or individuals serving food items assume liability regarding safety and wholesomeness of food items provided including complying with policy and food service health and safety laws;
  5. Individuals serving food take all precautions that food products are reasonably protected from unsanitary handling by using gloves, tongs and covers as needed;
  6. Individuals requesting the usage of space in Residential Life Facilities must contact the appropriate Residential Life staff a minimum of fifteen (15) days prior to the requested event date. Contact Residential Life at reslife@binghamton.edu for more information on your request. 

Review and Revision:
Submitted Draft for Review and Comment: March 5, 2019
Approved by SOG: April 9, 2019
Effective Date: August 1, 2019

Last Updated: 9/18/19