The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit upheld a City of St. Louis ordinance requiring a permit for the distribution of “potentially hazardous food” against a Free Speech challenge brought by persons who, as part of their charitable and religious practice, gave food to unhoused persons.
The case, Redlich v. City of St. Louis, No. 21-2894, — F.4th —, 2022 WL 6880810 (8th Cir. Oct. 12, 2022), involved an ordinance that regulated the distribution of “potentially hazardous food.” That term comes from the 2009 National Food Code and refers to food that requires “time/temperature control for safety.” The ordinance includes a ban on the preparation or service of sandwiches containing meat, poultry, eggs, or fish by temporary food establishments without a permit and without sanitary measures such as hand-washing stations. The permit must be applied for 48 hours in advance and costs $50 per day.