Mobile Food Vendors

Supervisory License

A new local law changes how mobile food vendors can get a new full-term (year-round) mobile food vending permit.

To get a new, full-term mobile food vending permit, you will need a new type of license called a supervisory license.

There are two types of supervisory licenses: a citywide license and a license for all boroughs except Manhattan (non-Manhattan). A vendor can apply for a full-term permit for the area indicated on their supervisory license. The Health Department will offer 445 supervisory license applications each year for the next 10 years.

The citywide and non-Manhattan supervisory license waiting lists will open in November 2022. Vendors eligible to join these waiting lists include:

  • Vendors who were on a full-term citywide or borough-specific permit waiting list
  • Vendors who continuously held a mobile food vending license from March 1, 2017 through February 28, 2021

The Health Department will send letters to eligible vendors in the middle of November. You can see if you will receive a letter using this look-up tool. Enter the eight-digit license number that is on your license ID card:

The waiting list for a citywide supervisory license for U.S. veterans and people with disabilities will open in 2023. Licensed vendors will be notified when that waiting list application period opens.

For more information about supervisory licenses, see:


A mobile food vendor is a person who sells food — or distributes it free of charge — from a mobile food vending unit in any public, private or restricted space.

A mobile food vending unit is a food service establishment within a pushcart or vehicle that is used to store, prepare, display, serve or sell food — or distribute it free of charge — for consumption in a place other than in or on the unit. Any such pushcart or vehicle is considered a mobile food vending unit, whether it's operated indoors or outdoors on public, private or restricted space.

To sell food on the street, you must have a food vendor license, and your unit must have a permit.

Permit holders and licensed vendors must keep their mailing address current with the NYC Health Department. You can update your address or make an appointment to visit the Citywide Licensing Center at 42 Broadway, Manhattan, First Floor. The center is open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Mobile Food Vendor Waiting List Lookup

If you have a Mobile Food Vending license and are on a waiting list, you can now check your up-to-date position on the waiting list online. Search our new look-up tool by using the eight-digit license number that is on your license ID card.

Mobile Food Vendor License

There is no limit on the total number of mobile food vendor licenses granted by the City, but each vendor can get only one license.

If you want to operate or work on a mobile food cart in NYC, you must take the Food Protection Course for Mobile Vendors and get a mobile food vending license.

Mobile Food Vendor Permit

Available Permits

The number of mobile food vendor permits available for issuance is restricted by law, with the following limits:

  • 2,800 Full-term Citywide Permits, valid for a two-year period
  • 100 Full-term Citywide Permits exclusively for veterans and disabled people, valid for a two-year period
  • 200 Full-term Borough-Specific Permits (up to 50 permits available for each borough other than Manhattan), valid for a two-year period
  • 1,000 Seasonal Citywide Permits, valid from April to October each year
  • 1,000 Green Cart Permits (fruit and vegetables)

Under a new law enacted this year, there will be an additional 445 mobile food vending permits available each year between July 2022 and July 2023. People who are already on a mobile food vending waiting list and have held a mobile food vending license since March 1, 2017, will be eligible first.

There are waiting lists for each category of permits. Vendors on a waiting list may only apply for a permit after they have been contacted by the Health Department. New lists will be created based on the turnover rate of the existing lists.

Green Cart, Seasonal and Restricted Area Permits

  • NYC Green Cart Permits are for mobile food vendors offering fresh fruits and vegetables in certain parts of NYC.

  • Seasonal (Temporary) Permits allow mobile food vending throughout New York City — where already allowed by existing regulations — from April 1 to October 31. There are a limited number of permits available.

  • Restricted Area Mobile Food Vending Permits allow for vending on private property in a commercially zoned area, or on property under the jurisdiction of the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation. This type of permit does not authorize street vending. There is no waiting list for this permit and no limit on the number of permits available.

Renewing a Permit

Mobile Food Vending Permits must be renewed. A renewal application form will be mailed to each permit holder at the last known address of record. You must complete and return the form with updated supporting documentation and the appropriate permit fee (if applicable).

Mobile Food Vending Streets Map

This interactive map shows where you are allowed to vend food from a cart or truck. It also provides information on specific location restrictions.


Letter Grading

The NYC Health Department assigns mobile food vending units letter grades based on the total violation points found during sanitary inspections.

Before a unit can receive a grade, it will need a new permit decal and a location-sharing device affixed to the unit at its next pre-permit inspection. Once assigned a letter grade, each food truck and cart will have its letter grade posted on the unit's permit decal.

For more information, see:

Mobile Food Vending Units: Cleaning, Servicing and Storage

All mobile food vending units (pushcarts, trailers and vehicles) must operate out of a facility (commissary) permitted by the NYC Health Department, or another facility approved by the Health Department. Vendors must store their units at a mobile food vending commissary when not in use. Units must be returned to the commissary at least once each day for cleaning and maintenance.

Mobile Food Vending Unit Permit holders must provide to the Health Department a Commissary Agreement at their pre-permit inspection. They must subsequently notify the Health Department within 10 days of any change in the agreement. Commissary operators must have a Non-Retail Food Establishment Permit.

Commissary operators are required to maintain a Daily Service Log that tracks every mobile food vending unit that is cleaned, serviced or stored at their facility. The log must include the dates and times each unit returns to and leaves from the commissary. It must be available to inspectors upon request.

Health Code Regulations

Additional Resources and Guidance

More Information