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McEvoy AZ
09-26-2013, 12:57 PM
I had an unusual happening during my last competition. The Heath Department from the county that the competition was in did an inspection during chicken turn in. I didn't want to tell him to get lost, but he was actually temping my chicken while I was building my chicken box. Also the first time I ever went through a health department inspection at a comp, so I didn't know what to expect. It did throw me off my game a little bit and I ended up running my box and making the turn in by around 30 seconds. Not complaining as there are usually various thing that can throw you off your game, but I did not expect this one. Has anyone have a story like this and how did you handle it?

RobKC
09-26-2013, 01:27 PM
I can't see myself handling that scenario very well at all.

rooftop bbq
09-26-2013, 01:47 PM
I've told them to get lost before, as many can attest dont miss with me during turn ins. If you are doing PC make sure to have another person that can take care of the HD will you do your thing.

smokinit
09-26-2013, 01:50 PM
Dont have that problem at all around here don't think they have a say as long as we are not serving the public.

HarleyGirl14226
09-26-2013, 03:32 PM
I think if someone from outside of our team came into our site and said they needed to temp our food during a turn-in while I was preparing a box, there would be some Jersey Girl action coming into play.

Were you forewarned by the organizer that the Health dept. might be making a visit at some point during the comp.?

Icekub
09-26-2013, 03:44 PM
I would not have let anyone touch anything having to do w/ my turn in boxes. That's ridiculous

Goddahavit
09-26-2013, 03:46 PM
I have seen a few around that have had these issues, I just vote with my money and I do not sign up for them.

Some make a big deal about inspected fire extinguishers as well, I just do not return to those comps. they are just trying to take money out of my pocket for nothing...

just added aggravation i do not need during a comp...

rookiedad
09-26-2013, 03:54 PM
if anyone wants to step into camp during turn in times they better be planning on sharing the entry fees!!!

smokinit
09-26-2013, 03:59 PM
They have come into camp if you were doing a peoples choice event but the Q contest is a private event not involving the public unless the orginizers wanted it.

Fat Freddy
09-26-2013, 04:24 PM
At my very first ever contest I had to deal with Health Dept right at chicken turn in. So the next year at the same contest I asked at the cooks meeting about the health dept and was told we would only have to deal with them if we were doing public tasting. We were the very first spot from the check in area and was NOT doing PC however health dept still came over(at least it was a better time Saturday morning) and checked temps but mainly if we had 3 wash basins and the proper sanitizer to water ratio. We were OK(had to add a tad more sanitizer) and after she left to the next team I went to the organizer and told her. I dont know exactly what happened from there except eventually the Rep came over and as far as I know it stopped. The way the Rep explained to me was that he had to tell the lady from HD that this was a private type event and the HD can ONLY go to teams doing PC. This was a couple of years ago KCBS.

McEvoy AZ
09-26-2013, 04:32 PM
Not many people were doing peoples choice at this event because of some of the heath departments demands. At the last second we agreed to do it because we wanted to help the charity, since there was not much participation in pc at this event, It was otherwise a fun event. I guess next year it is unfortunate we probably will not be doing PC. By the way we did well in the health inspection, the inspector found no violations.

DownHomeQue
09-26-2013, 04:46 PM
thats crazy... your doing turn-ins and they are poking your chicken? i would've blew a gasket...

ynotfehc
09-26-2013, 05:07 PM
I havent dealt with HD at a competition, but if you know in advance that you might have to deal with them, write down your temps when you pull if from the smoker and the time, and show them how you are holding them. I dont know anybody that only cooks 6 pieces of chicken, ribs, etc for KCBS, give them one of the extras you arent using or are still in your holding box, and go about your business. They dont have to temp each piece of chicken.

CivilWarBBQ
09-26-2013, 05:28 PM
That organizer isn't doing right by the cooks. If I ran an event where an HD inspector appeared I would personally sit chaperone them and run interference for the cook teams from 11:30-2:00.

Of course the proper thing to do is to prevent this from happening in the first place. There is absolutely no reason for a health inspector to be in a comp team's site unless that team is serving food to the public. Judges sign a waiver, they don't count as "public".

Coz
09-26-2013, 06:12 PM
Our 4th contest we were ever in Royal Invitational. There were some scantily clad young ladies running around with some sauce trying get people to try it .The one actually was going to pour it on the meat that was in the turn in box. I think MJL likely saved that girls life by getting her out of there at that point .My wife had that look ...

Fat Freddy
09-26-2013, 06:32 PM
Not many people were doing peoples choice at this event because of some of the heath departments demands. At the last second we agreed to do it because we wanted to help the charity, since there was not much participation in pc at this event, It was otherwise a fun event. I guess next year it is unfortunate we probably will not be doing PC. By the way we did well in the health inspection, the inspector found no violations.

Sadly I heard from the original organizer of the event I am talking about(Storm Lake,Iowa) that because of the HD most teams refused to do PC that particular year. Teams that had already agreed to do it but then felt dealing with the HD wasnt worth it. And they, the organizers, had talked to several teams about the contest for the next year and was told by those teams that they would not be doing PC again. This organizer told me that they were counting on PC to bring in lots of the public to the event but without PC there was no reason to come out and then the sponsors decided no reason to sponsor without public etc etc. So the decision was to cancel the event and it probably wont be back because of HD...This venue was a great location and had a very good team numbers and had the big time sponsors but the HD being difficult is why this contest is no more according to the original organizer.

I know the HD has an important job and I am not anti HD and I know there is more to the story about why this contest is no more but I think it is funny how even the organizer blames the HD.

TooSaucedToPork
09-26-2013, 07:00 PM
In most States KCBS Requirements are stricter than the HD...

wags
09-26-2013, 07:44 PM
Sadly I think you'll see more of this creep into our lives as government feels empowered more and more to butt into our private business. A comp a is a PRIVATE event not to different than a company picnic. I fully support hd's for keeping restaurants safe, but butt out of my private life

McEvoy AZ
09-26-2013, 07:53 PM
That organizer isn't doing right by the cooks. If I ran an event where an HD inspector appeared I would personally sit chaperone them and run interference for the cook teams from 11:30-2:00.

Of course the proper thing to do is to prevent this from happening in the first place. There is absolutely no reason for a health inspector to be in a comp team's site unless that team is serving food to the public. Judges sign a waiver, they don't count as "public".

Well I don't think the organizer saw him as the judges tables were a long walk from the teams that day. Like I said I reluctantly did PC, although I only was going to do PC after the turn ins and technically I was not doing any PC when inspected.

McEvoy AZ
09-26-2013, 08:07 PM
Sadly I heard from the original organizer of the event I am talking about(Storm Lake,Iowa) that because of the HD most teams refused to do PC that particular year. Teams that had already agreed to do it but then felt dealing with the HD wasnt worth it. And they, the organizers, had talked to several teams about the contest for the next year and was told by those teams that they would not be doing PC again. This organizer told me that they were counting on PC to bring in lots of the public to the event but without PC there was no reason to come out and then the sponsors decided no reason to sponsor without public etc etc. So the decision was to cancel the event and it probably wont be back because of HD...This venue was a great location and had a very good team numbers and had the big time sponsors but the HD being difficult is why this contest is no more according to the original organizer.

I know the HD has an important job and I am not anti HD and I know there is more to the story about why this contest is no more but I think it is funny how even the organizer blames the HD.

Well I do think I feel an obligation to contest sponsors and the charity which got me into this mess in the first place.

HBMTN
09-26-2013, 08:14 PM
Here if you enter the peoples choice then they check you but never for the KCBS judges. They have come around at several competitions and told us we could not give samples to the public without an inspection.

landarc
09-26-2013, 08:58 PM
Well, if there was PC, and the OP was signed up for it, then the HD has the right to inspect anything he is serving. Isn't right and why I would never do PC. You can't expect the inspector to know the difference. It is up to the organizer to make sure it doesn't happen.

Slamdunkpro
09-26-2013, 09:05 PM
Sadly I think you'll see more of this creep into our lives as government feels empowered more and more to butt into our private business. A comp a is a PRIVATE event not to different than a company picnic. I fully support hd's for keeping restaurants safe, but butt out of my private life
Don't count on this to protect you. There was a comp near here a couple of years ago where the HD was out in full force inspecting the KCBS meats. Their justification for this was the event was charging admission thus it was a public event. The fact that judges didn't pay admission didn't matter.

Ron_L
09-26-2013, 09:11 PM
Well, if there was PC, and the OP was signed up for it, then the HD has the right to inspect anything he is serving. Isn't right and why I would never do PC. You can't expect the inspector to know the difference. It is up to the organizer to make sure it doesn't happen.

I disagree, Bob. If the PC was pulled pork, for example, that's the only meat being served to the public, so to me that should be the only meat that they can inspect. Now my environment, three bin station, hand wash, etc. is fair game, but the other meats should be off limits.

landarc
09-26-2013, 09:17 PM
I assumed that PC was chicken, I didn't pay enough attention. Yes, it should be limited to the meat being served.

Slamdunkpro
09-26-2013, 09:19 PM
It won't be long before some municipality comes up with a "Competitive food service" permit.

landarc
09-26-2013, 09:21 PM
It won't be long before some municipality comes up with a "Competitive food service" permit.
No doubt, if they can collect a fee, you can bet on it

wags
09-26-2013, 09:52 PM
It won't be long before some municipality comes up with a "Competitive food service" permit.

I'd be out, and I'm guessing many other teams would be as well.

CBQ
09-26-2013, 10:11 PM
I think if someone from outside of our team came into our site and said they needed to temp our food during a turn-in while I was preparing a box, there would be some Jersey Girl action coming into play.

Don't mess with Jersey Girls, even ones that live in New York. :becky:


Only time I have seen the health department is at events with People's Choice or team vending. When we vend in Vermont we have to provide a "floor" under the prep areas, which in our case means foam matts. I don't see how it's a food safety issue. If something hits the ground or hits the matt, it's not getting served.

swamprb
09-26-2013, 10:25 PM
Its becoming all too common here in Washington State. I won't sample or vend at any contest that I am competing at.

There was an event that the HD shut down all sampling and vending for an organizers charity due to some teams not having food handlers cards and other violations. And another established event was killed by a $4000 HD fee for teams to sample for their charity.

Some events have even factored in Health Dept. fees in the registrations (waived upon early entry), but that should come out of the organizers pockets, wouldn't you think???

Ron_L
09-26-2013, 10:28 PM
People's choice chili has been killed at two or three comps here because of health department involvement. In all cases the proceeds went to charity.

Slamdunkpro
09-26-2013, 10:31 PM
People's choice chili has been killed at two or three comps here because of health department involvement. In all cases the proceeds went to charity.
The HD probably insured that a 2nd year contest this year in VA was it's last.

swamprb
09-26-2013, 10:50 PM
People's choice chili has been killed at two or three comps here because of health department involvement. In all cases the proceeds went to charity.

The HD probably insured that a 2nd year contest this year in VA was it's last.


I think that the PNWBA has done a pretty good job of taking a proactive stance in trying to educate teams in dealing with HD inspections. Even though each county is different, we usually get good reports from the inspectors when they've gone through and done their job.
I realize its probably too big of a deal for KCBS to tackle, and not in the business to, but regional BBQ Associations might be able to do a better job to hip organizers and teams to HD regulations?

Here is a registration from a recent PNWBA event that had BBQ, Dutch Oven and Chili sampling.

http://www.pnwba.com/events/2013/2013.comp.wa.moseslake.basinbash.pdf

just sayin'

McEvoy AZ
09-27-2013, 12:00 AM
Don't mess with Jersey Girls, even ones that live in New York. :becky:


Only time I have seen the health department is at events with People's Choice or team vending. When we vend in Vermont we have to provide a "floor" under the prep areas, which in our case means foam matts. I don't see how it's a food safety issue. If something hits the ground or hits the matt, it's not getting served.

One of the reasons why I was not going to do pc is this was required, why buy a mat just to do pc. I was told by HD that it was for dust control.

didisea
09-27-2013, 12:02 AM
The only way I would do a PC sampling is if there is a good split with the organizer - i.e. 75% me 25% organizer or charity, paid in cash at the end of the event, held at a Indian casino where there is no health dept.

The last contest Brian is referring to above wanted the teams to fork over $20 for a health dept permit, for the privilege of handing out our leftovers for 20% of the ticket sales, divided EQUALLY among the teams who sampled. UH no - I'm not even covering the cost of the meat, let alone the hassle of the health dept. And a team that passes out 8 pieces of chicken is going to get the same amout as a team who cooks extra meat. And since there are different rules for different counties, it is nearly impossible to figure out what you can and cannot do in terms of reheating and holding meat. I would just rather give it to the judges to take home.

Crash
09-27-2013, 12:10 AM
One of the reasons why I was not going to do pc is this was required, why buy a mat just to do pc. I was told by HD that it was for dust control.
Makes perfect farking sense. We all know that the only dust at a comp that could possibly affect your food comes from directly within your own boundaries.

CivilWarBBQ
09-27-2013, 02:17 AM
Well I don't think the organizer saw him as the judges tables were a long walk from the teams that day. Like I said I reluctantly did PC, although I only was going to do PC after the turn ins and technically I was not doing any PC when inspected.

Being proactive with all of the local regulators, be it the HD, PD, FD or whatnot is a big part of an organizer's job. If The Powers at a location are not understanding and motivated to work with you to make the event a success it is time to find a new location.

Once at a large contest in the South a county HD inspector took it upon herself to start inflicting her will upon the teams. Cooks called the organizer and the organizer immediately took it up the chain of political command. The inspector was escorted off the property before she could destroy the contest. (Her first victims were threatening to pack up and leave before turn-ins and demand a refund of their entry fees).

I can't think of a better example of the way it should be handled when a rogue bureaucrat decides to flex their authority muscles to the detriment of the entire community.

Kit R
09-27-2013, 06:27 AM
The HD probably insured that a 2nd year contest this year in VA was it's last.

Hmmmmm.......

watg?
09-27-2013, 07:01 AM
If there is no PC, local HD have no business in anyone's camp, what is next, will they show up in your back yard when you are having a cookout?.....don't answer that :)

McEvoy AZ
09-27-2013, 08:26 AM
If there is no PC, local HD have no business in anyone's camp, what is next, will they show up in your back yard when you are having a cookout?.....don't answer that :)

Not doing PC at a comp makes it pretty boring for the general public. What else is there to do at an event then to walk around and look at banners and tents. I also agree when you are just starting out doing pc is not what you want to focus on. Hopefully you can have someone on your team dedicated to pc so the head cook and at least one assistant do not need to worry about pc. I also take time to interact with the public by answering questions they may have to help them with there own cooks. Like I said earlier I think I have an obligation to sponcers and charities for their parts in a compatition. If we as a community can bring more people to comps then lower entry fees and higher payouts are possible and the general public can also find out how great most competitors are. Most of us, even though you may have dropped $1000 on an event, are willing to help out new teams. This being said what ever we can do to promote the sport is worth doing. That's my opinion.

McEvoy AZ
09-27-2013, 08:46 AM
I think that the PNWBA has done a pretty good job of taking a proactive stance in trying to educate teams in dealing with HD inspections. Even though each county is different, we usually get good reports from the inspectors when they've gone through and done their job.
I realize its probably too big of a deal for KCBS to tackle, and not in the business to, but regional BBQ Associations might be able to do a better job to hip organizers and teams to HD regulations?

Here is a registration from a recent PNWBA event that had BBQ, Dutch Oven and Chili sampling.

http://www.pnwba.com/events/2013/2013.comp.wa.moseslake.basinbash.pdf

just sayin'

By the way I think this is a great post. I certainly not going to slam orginisors or hold Them responsible for a county HD inspecting me during my chicken turn in, but I do think this is a good lesson. Here in AZ there is not that many orginisors and what the pnwba is doing by being proactive with HD is a good lesson for them. Let's face it, having the HD at the event is not enjoyed by any orginisors I know. Why not bring them to us first to educate the HD on what is import during a comp so they don't test us while turn ins and if the feel they need to inspect only do the teams that are actually have pc meat out.
I might get beat up for this a little but I believe most orginisors do the best job they can and most of them do not make real money by doing events. So you really got to love being involved with BBQ comps to do what they do with all that can go wrong at a comp. they put there reputations on the line very event they organize an event. There is a good chance they make a lot of friends and there is a good chance at some point they will loose friends all mostly for the love of BBQ.

Patrickkva
09-27-2013, 09:05 AM
The HD probably insured that a 2nd year contest this year in VA was it's last.

So true! We got lucky and had a nice inspector, but there was another "team" of inspectors that were epic *ssholes. Pepper Monkey was told to take down their decorative toy stuffed monkey they had hanging from their tent.

That one team of inspectors was on a power trip.

Funtimebbq
09-27-2013, 09:09 AM
In 2010 at a contest in Queen Creek (AZ), a HD inspector showed up as we were deciding which chicken thighs were the best of our bunch. She proceeded to stick a hole in one of them before I even know what was happening. When I said, we were not even doing PC, she said, all teams are being checked. I've been to a lot of contests in many states. AZ is the only place that has happened. Everywhere else, inspectors have been given lists of teams doing PC and have not bothered those teams not participating.

Slamdunkpro
09-27-2013, 09:10 AM
In 2010 at a contest in Queen Creek (AZ), a HD inspector showed up as we were deciding which chicken thighs were the best of our bunch. She proceeded to stick a hole in one of them before I even know what was happening. When I said, we were not even doing PC, she said, all teams are being checked. I've been to a lot of contests in many states. AZ is the only place that has happened. Everywhere else, inspectors have been given lists of teams doing PC and have not bothered those teams not participating.
It's happened in Maryland

Slamdunkpro
09-27-2013, 09:14 AM
If there is no PC, local HD have no business in anyone's camp, what is next, will they show up in your back yard when you are having a cookout?.....don't answer that :)

Too late (http://www.naturalnews.com/034125_food_freedom_picnic.html)

Yeller
09-27-2013, 10:03 AM
Rick, sounds like this guy was pretty new at his job...lucky he didn't get a themapen as a rectum thermometer...BTW are you West Valley now?

McEvoy AZ
09-27-2013, 10:45 AM
Rick, sounds like this guy was pretty new at his job...lucky he didn't get a themapen as a rectum thermometer...BTW are you West Valley now?

Yes, I moved to Laveen.

Kit R
09-27-2013, 10:46 AM
So true! We got lucky and had a nice inspector, but there was another "team" of inspectors that were epic *ssholes. Pepper Monkey was told to take down their decorative toy stuffed monkey they had hanging from their tent.

That one team of inspectors was on a power trip.

Although I think Mike might have been referring to a different VA comp than the one you're talking about, I heard the tales of that day. Joel and Erin are some of the most organized, sanitary minded competitors out there. When they get a ration of you know what, then you know it's bad. I did not participate in PC at the comp you're referring to. I did, however, participate at another one as a favor to the organizer. It did not go well on a number of levels.

Stoke&Smoke
09-27-2013, 12:07 PM
Happened to us at Milwaukee the last year they had the comp. Inspector didn't mess with my meat though. He saw the 3 tubs, sanitizing test strips, and cambros and moved on. Gave our next door neighbors some grief though. We weren't doing peoples choice so I really don't know what the heck he was doing

Rich Parker
09-27-2013, 12:48 PM
We had an HD inspector at a comp once only suppose to be inspecting the teams doing the people's choice but he decided it was up to him to inspect everyone. I locked my trailer and walked away as I wasn't going to deal with that. Give some people a little bit of power and they can't handle themselves.