Sidewalk Vending for LA County

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Sidewalk Vending for LA County

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors adopted the County’s first official Sidewalk Vending Ordinance for the unincorporated areas of LA County. With support from local and regional partners, DEO is here to help sidewalk vendors start up and thrive while also ensuring safe and healthy communities through compliant sidewalk vending operations.  

This milestone provides a pathway for entrepreneurs and small businesses into a newly legalized open-air economy, offering economic opportunity for vendors as well as conditions for better public health, safety, and well-being for all vendors, brick and mortar businesses, and community members. 

If you are an existing business or seeking to learn more about our other small business programs and support as a sidewalk vendor, including the Los Angeles County business certification process and incentives for certified small businesses, please contact our department at (844) 432-4900 between the hours of 8 AM to 5 PM. You may also request to meet with a member of our team by clicking here.

Start your sidewalk vending business!

Sidewalk vending is legal in LA County, thanks to SB 946. In order to get started and/or stay compliant with regulations, follow these steps: 

Step 1: What Can You Sell?

To kick start your sidewalk vending business, see list of items you can sell as retail or food.

  • Retail sales include clothing, household items, gifts, flowers, cards, handmade items, and more.  
  • Food allowable without a permit are items such as whole fruits, vegetables and prepackaged from a store (chips, sodas, snacks) under 25 square feet or (5 feet by 5 feet space)

Sale of other types of food may require one or more types of Health Permits issues through the LA County Department of Public Health.

  • Prepare and sell food from home! You can prepare and sell certain foods from your home kitchen through a Cottage Food permit. There are only specific foods you are able to prepare from home. Check the list of approved cottage foods list.

Step 2: Where Can you Sell?

Location is important and you’ll need to get the right business license or permit for your street vending business depending on where you plan to operate. DEO can offer support on countywide rules, regulations and resources to help you navigate jurisdiction specific need.

Step 3: How to get started!

You will need to get a tax ID, register a business name, and get your seller’s permit to launch your sidewalk vending business!

Compact MObile Food Operations Permit

DEO will be providing training and workshops on how to obtain your Compact Mobile Food Operations (CMFO) permit. Through the CMFO Subsidy Opportunity program, sidewalk vendors selling food can obtain their CMFO permit at a reduced rate of up to 75% of total permitting costs including inspections. To qualify for the program, a sidewalk vendor must apply online or in person and satisfy the following criteria:  

  • Must be a resident or operating in unincorporated areas of LA County by self-attestation
  • Must have less than $50,000 in gross annual receipts   
  • Must attend a qualifying DEO workshop which can be virtual or in person 
  • Must submit an application online or in person
  • Must not have an active or previously active CMFO permit
    Cannot be used for CMFO renewals 
  • Nontransferable, not to be reassigned

The subsidies will be available until the available funds are exhausted or will expire in December 2024.  The subsidies will be offered in language, virtually, and in person throughout the County’s libraries and community centers.

How to Participate?
You must register and attend at least one in-person or virtual session in order to qualify.

Register for a workshop today by visiting:

Tuesday, March 26, 2024
CMFO Subsidy and Sidewalk Vending Workshop
English and Spanish
Tuesday, April 9, 2024
CMFO Subsidy and Sidewalk Vending Workshop
English and Spanish
Tuesday, April 17, 2024
Food Handlers Certificate Workshop
Register for a workshop today by visiting:

Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations in LA County

LA County is considering a new law that will allow residents to legally operate a miniature restaurant in their home kitchen (not including cities of Pasadena, Long Beach or Vernon), also known as MEHKOs, or Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations. MEHKOs is a state law that if passed locally, will provide entrepreneurs and aspiring chefs a legal pathway to:

  • Prepare, and serve food to the public, as allowed by State law, similar to a mini restaurant;
  • Make up to 90 meals per week and 30 meals per day; and
  • Earn up to $100,000 in revenue

Interested in receiving information on MEHKOS?

Scan QR code or click on the link below to receive the latest information.

Have Questions or need Support?

Our Office of Small Business is here to help!

Access free one-on-one business counseling sessions in-person, online or over the phone to ask questions on how to get your sidewalk vending business started or how to operate your cart in compliance of rules and regulations! We can help you find local requirements, apply for the Health Permit that’s right for you, and connect you to other business resources offered through our partners. 

Connect to OSB or Partners

Call DEO’s Office of Small Business at (844)-432-4900. Para vendedores ambulantes nuevos o existentes llame a DEO al (844) 432-4900

In-Person Visits

Visit the Office of Small Business, Monday to Friday, 8am to 4:30pm at 4716 E. Cesar E. Chavez, Los Angeles 90022.

Access Online Services

Access online support by submitting your question at our East LA Entrepreneur Center – Concierge Service!

Have a Sidewalk Vending Concern?

To report a sidewalk vending activity operating in the unincorporated area of LA County, call the Office of Small Business at (844) 432-4900 or email Please include details about the problem, exact location of the sales, day and times of operations.

Additional Resources for Small Businesses

DEO is home the Office of Small Business – LA County’s one-top centralized hub for entrepreneurs and small businesses.

Supporting Local Mom and Pop Stores

Team DEO kick started Shop Local LA County to support mom & pop stores and strengthen the bonds that connect our communities. Through Shop Local, small businesses can also connect to wide range of resources to support their economic and digital growth including social media training, digital marketing resources, and coaching!

Save Time, Money, and Resources!

Small businesses in LA County can connect with legal experts and access ongoing webinars, one-on-one counseling, & legal academies at NO-COST to help businesses maintain their status, personnel, property, and revenue streams!  See complete calendar listing of upcoming virtual & in-person workshops, webinars & presentations.

Help with Winning a Contract!

For free 1-on-1 technical assistance to respond and find opportunities like the Street Vending Cart RFP and other government procurement, meet with DEO’s APEX Accelerators. Services include how to find and respond to an RFP, understand registration and certification requirements and how to market to government agencies or prime contractors.  

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