What is Catering Insurance?

Catering events for clients is a fun and potentially profitable career. It comes with several inherent risks, though. Catering insurance policies help protect caterers from lots of the risks they’re exposed to every time they cater an event.

Catering insurance is similar to restaurant insurance, but catering policies take into account the unique challenges and risks that serving food at off-site locations presents. Most catering policies are written as package policies, combining several coverages into a single policy.

What Coverages Are Offered by Catering Policies?

The exact coverages that a catering policy offers are usually customized for a caterer’s particular situation. Therefore, not all catering policies have the same coverages. Nevertheless, there are many coverages that lots of policies do offer. These coverages can be grouped into property protections and catering liability insurance protections. 

Property coverages help protect the property that caterers own. Even though caterers may not own a building, they still usually have property that should be insured. Catering liability insurance coverages help protect caterers in situations where they’re at fault or accused of being at fault.

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Some property coverages that caterers may want to include:

  • Contents Coverage, which may extend property protection to equipment, tools, and other moveable items
  • Food Contamination Coverage, which might offer compensation for food that spoils due to a covered incident
  • Equipment Breakdown Coverage, which may pay for emergency repairs if essential equipment breaks 

Some catering liability insurance coverages that policies frequently offer are:

  • General Liability Insurance, which offers broad protections against common risks that lots of businesses face
  • Product Liability Coverage, which may cover incidents where a foodborne disease is spread by  a cater’s beverages for foods
  • Liquor Liability Coverage, which caterers often need if they serve alcohol

Most caterers have vans or trucks that they drive to clients’ sites and, therefore, need commercial auto insurance. Whether auto coverage is purchased through a catering policy or separately, varies. 

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Do Catering Policies Provide Workers Compensation Coverage?

Catering policies usually aren’t set up to offer workers compensation coverage. They also don’t normally provide health or disability insurance. Caterers that need these insurances for their employees normally purchase them apart from a catering policy.

What Sorts of Incidents Do Catering Policies Cover?

Precisely what incidents a catering policy covers depends on the policy’s coverages, terms, conditions, and exclusions. With the right protections in place, a policy may cover some of the following perils and incidents:

  • Equipment fires
  • Food poisoning
  • Damage or injuries caused by intoxicated guests
  • False advertising, slander, and libel lawsuits

What Businesses Need Catering Policies?

Caterers, of course, ought to consider getting a catering policy. It’s typically the most affordable and convenient way to get the insurance coverages that caterers need. Catering policies aren’t just for caterers, though.

Any eatery that offers off-site catering may need a catering policy. This includes restaurants, bars, and other establishments that have physical locations but also cater events. For, these businesses are often exposed to many of the same risks that caterers face.

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How Can Caterers and Restaurants Get Catering Insurance Quotes?

Exactly what coverages a caterer should look for when purchasing catering insurance depends on what types of events they cater and many other factors. For help finding a catering policy that offers all the coverages their business needs, caterers should contact an independent insurance agent. An independent agent will be able to help determine what coverages are appropriate for a catering business, and they can get quotes for catering policies that provide those coverages.

Meet Your Industry Specialist

Jeff Kroeger

Principal, Senior Vice President, and Head of Commercial Lines, Mr. Kroeger also manages the company's hospitality book of business and is that unit's primary producer. He is a graduate of Montclair State University and was named a 2015 Young Gun Insurance Business America.

Jeff has been providing exceptional insurance for restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and more for many years. He understands the unique challenges this industry faces and delivers the right coverage at an affordable price.

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