CHEF INSURANCE

General FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS



CAN I SERVE OR PURCHASE ALCOHOL FOR AN EVENT OR CLIENT?

The purchase of alcohol is not permitted unless you have been granted a licence by your local liquor control board.  Serving alcohol at an event is not covered by the insurance policy, irrespective of whether you have Safe Serve certification.  Wine recommendations and the use of alcohol as a cooking ingredient (where the alcohol is 'burned off') are permitted.


CAN I PREPARE FOOD AT HOME AND DELIVER TO THE CLIENT?

Most municipalities have very strict laws regarding where food for sale can be prepared and how it can be transported.  These laws protect the client from food-borne illnesses should food be prepared in a kitchen that has not been inspected and passed by the health department; there are also risks to the food during transportation, if it is not transported in a refrigerated truck, for example.  The General Liability Insurance included in membership may not cover your business if you do not adhere to related laws should anything go wrong.

​Personal Chefs avoid these issues by transporting the raw ingredients to the client's home, and preparing all of the meals in the client's kitchen. 


For catering, you can use a licensed, inspected commercial kitchen or have your home kitchen inspected and approved by your local Health Department.  If you are doing the latter, you must notify your Home Insurance provider that you are running a business there.


Transporting food also carries risks.  You may consider having your clients pick up the prepared meals from the place of preparation, but should have clear instructions for the client on how to transport and store the food to keep it 'food safe'.  Some members may have access to continuous temperature food storage bags/boxes to keep hot/cold food at safe levels.


Having a waiver or contract addressing transportation, handling and storage recommendations with your clients is highly recommended for all situations where you hand over the control of the food to the client.  Some members may have access to preferred rates for legal advice.



I HAVE ACCESS TO A KITCHEN IN A LOCAL CHURCH.  CAN I PREPARE FOOD THERE AND THEN TRANSPORT IT TO A CLIENT'S HOME or an event?

The Chef Alliance does not approve of, or endorse, any of its members providing food-related services except as permitted by the laws and regulations of our respective jurisdictions, and as covered in the liability insurance policy.  

Using church kitchens or those in service clubs, organisations or schools as a location to cook food and then for you to transport it to clients may not be covered by the policy.  You should use legal, inspected commercial kitchens and should abide by your local health & safety regulations, both while cooking and transporting the prepared foods.  


You may need to have a refrigerated van to transport the prepared foods or specialty equipment to hold the prepared food in etc.  Some members may have access to continuous temperature food storage bags/boxes to keep hot/cold food at safe levels.


Should you decide to proceed without taking the recommended safeguards, you may not be covered by the policy.  Should anything go wrong, you may be wholly responsible.  This could be a costly mistake.



I PROVIDE RECREATIONAL COOKING CLASSES AT VARIOUS LOCATIONS.  DOES THE INSURANCE COVER THIS SERVICE?

Yes.  The policy covers recreational classes up to 20 attendees.  The facilities may ask that you add them to your certificate of insurance.  This can be done easily for little or no cost.  Simply contact our office for details.



is it ok for attendees of MY COOKING CLASSES to THE take the food home.  


You should provide clients with handling and storage instructions for any food that they take away, so that if the items need to be refrigerated, the instructions clearly indicate this.  Having a disclaimer on your invoice/quotes/receipts etc would also be helpful; members get special-priced legal consultations for this.  The last thing you need is for someone to take food home, leave them on the counter-top or in their car and then eat the food a few hours later - a food-illness disaster waiting to happen!



I PROVIDE A MEAL PREPARATION SERVICE WHERE I COOK MEALS FROM MY HOME (WHICH HAS BEEN INSPECTED AND APPROVED BY THE APPROPRIATE GOVERNMENT AGENCIES) AND THESE MEALS ARE PICKED UP BY MY CLIENTS ON THEIR WAY HOME FROM WORK.  DOES THE INSURANCE COVER THIS SERVICE?

Yes, this type of service may be covered by the policy.  However, there are some restrictions, which our team can discuss with you - contact us for details.



I create custom dessert tables for private events and sell desserts & cookies at local events, farmers markets and for special orders. Do you provide insurance for this?


Yes; selling food & drink products directly to consumers and private catering events is typically covered by the liability insurance provided with our membership.



WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HEALTH INSURANCE AND CRITICAL ILLNESS INSURANCE?


There’s a big difference between them.

Critical illness insures you so that if you suffer a critical illness - cancer, heart disease etc. - the insurance pays you a lump sum payment.  You can use it to cover expenses while you are recuperating, or for treatments.  You decide.

Health insurance is designed to look after your health so you can get on with looking after your business.  It usually covers medical treatment - doctors, medical practitioners, medication etc. - so that you can recover and get back to work quickly.