Risk Management & Insurance


Food & Drink

food served in round silver chafers

Catering Services

The UCSB Interim Food Service Policy governs catering, food distribution, and food sales sponsored, hosted or administered by members of the UCSB community, that use UCSB managed funds, or take place on University premises or in University facilities.

Catered Events at UCSB

The UCSB Interim Food Service Policy gives UCen Catering and Special Events Catering exclusive responsibility for providing all catering, food distribution, and food sales at UC Santa Barbara. Departments planning events that will require catered food service, either on-campus or off-campus, must first contact both UCen Catering and Special Events Catering who have first right of refusal to provide service. If neither UCen Catering nor Special Events Catering can provide the required food service they will permit the use of a commercial caterer. Commercial caterers must meet University insurance requirements and possess a current Health Permit.

Caterer Insurance/Health Permit Requirements

If UCen Catering and Special Events Catering give a department permission to work with a commercial caterer, the caterer must be “approved” before it can provide service at a University function.

See FS: Catering Services Approval Process for more information.

List of Approved Caterers

See FS: List of Approved Caterers.

Obtaining a UCSB Catering Permit

Caterers cannot work at a campus event without an approved Catering Permit. The UCSB Catering Permit contains terms and conditions that protect the University in the event that the caterer’s acts or omissions are responsible for injury.

After the Risk Management office has put a caterer on the List of Approved Caterers, the department must complete the following steps to obtain an approved UCSB Catering Permit:

When the Department submits the caterer’s invoice to Accounting, it must submit the approved Catering Permit along with the invoice or Accounting will not pay the invoice.

Food Truck Catering Service

If a food truck is going to provide catering service, the department and the food truck vendor must contact Campus Concessions. Campus Concessions will coordinate the approval process with UCen Catering and Special Events Catering.

Catering Services - Exception to Policy

When a department orders pizza or catered food service whose total cost does not exceed $150.00, they do not need the approval of UCen Catering or Special Events Catering and a UCSB Catering Permit is not required. Except for pizza delivery, ALL food service at UCSB events must be from caterers who are on the List of Approved Caterers and who are approved to provide food service at UCSB events.

Required Event Information

Provide the following information about your event to UCen Catering and Special Events Catering when making a request for food service: event date and time, event location, sponsoring department, department contact name, telephone number, and email address, number of people at the event, type of food, whether selling food or catering (no cash handling), the name of the caterer you wish to use if UCen Catering or Special Events Catering cannot meet the department’s needs. Provide a copy of the caterer’s invoice or quote.

Food Safety & Sanitation

The University requires that caterers, concessionaires, and food trucks comply with University policies and procedures regarding food safety and sanitation and the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department’s Requirements for Temporary Food Facilities. UCen Catering, Special Events Catering, Campus Concessions, and Environmental Health & Safety reserve the right to monitor and inspect food distribution by commercial food providers at University events to ensure compliance with these requirements.

Food Concessions

Go to UCSB: Food Concessions for information about the use of food concessions at UCSB events.