Should Lemonade Stands Require A Health Permit?

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For most American children, setting up a lemonade stand is a spontaneous event - Wake up one bright summer morning, squeeze a few lemons and start selling it to whoever passes by.

However, if you live in Multnomah County, Oregon, you may have to do some planning beforehand and obtain a Health Permit by forking out $120USD, before you can even think about setting up one or, risk getting shut down!

That's what happened to seven-year old Julie Murphy, who set up shop at a local community fair in Northeast Portland. Things were going well, when a health inspector showed up and asked to see a health permit authorizing her to sell lemonade.

Since she obviously didn't have one and Jon Kawaguchi, the environmental health supervisor needed to 'put the public's health first', he asked her to shut down her entrepreneurial venture or, pay a fine of $500USD.

Despite protests from Julie's mom and a number of the vendors, he remained steadfast in his ruling and the seven-year old had no choice but to take her jug of Kool-Aid lemonade and, head home!

When the news of this rather bizarre event reached County chairman Jeff Cogen, he of course reversed the decision and even called little Julie and her mother Marie Fife to apologize. He said that while that is indeed the law, he would have expected the health inspector to use some professional judgment, also known as, common sense?

What do you think? Was the official justified in following the law or should he have turned blind eye to little Julie's 'illegal' and 'unhygienic' venture? Be sure to let us know by adding your comments below.

Sources:scaredmonkeys.com,nydailynews.com

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90 Comments
  • Alyssaalmost 8 years
    Oh my gosh are you flipping kinding me!!! Woooooow! That is rediculous! I mean come on! Your going to need a permit to sell lemonade! Give me a brake! There is more health concerns then a little lemonade stand! I mean give me a brake! World pollution is a bigger problem and we don't do anything about that! Yet people have the adasoty to go crush a little girls dream!! Wow
    • kristen sheetsalmost 8 years
      thats CUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      • nishthecoolabout 8 years
        aw so sad is this a good article for health class?
        • jemima5
          jemima5about 8 years
          Thats so mean, although I wouldn't like it if they sold lemonade without telling you whats in them!
          • Headream100about 8 years
            What? That is awful! She's only seven! She has the right to sell her own drinks! It doesn't even contain POISON FOR PETE'S SAKE!!!! That is just..... Taking away a child's hopes and dreams! It's not fair at all! How..??? How could they DO THAT TO HER???
            • horsesruleabout 8 years
              so sad
              • sparkle987
                sparkle987over 8 years
                I hope she now is living a lemonade selling life
                • joeover 8 years
                  sad face+rage face
                  • hey
                    heyover 8 years
                    NEVER!!!!
                    • dragon-fire-69
                      dragon-fire-69over 8 years
                      Yeah how could he do that to her