The blogosphere that obsessively tracks New York’s street vendors was agog: The Health Department was banning carts from selling seafood starting Jan. 1.
Where to go for cod schnitzel, a staple at Schnitzel & Things’ truck or the popular fried fish at Kim’s Aunt Kitchen Cart, Midtownlunch.com wondered yesterday.
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Word trickled to cart fans. A customer commiserated with Veronica Julian at her cart on Front Street.
“Oh boy, that’s going to hurt business,” said Julian, who sells fried fish and curried shrimp alongside oxtail and jerk chicken.
Turns out, the Health Department erred when it wrote up its amended rules. The ban was only meant to apply to raw shellfish.
“The wording in the recent amendments to the Health Code effectively prohibit the sale of all seafood, raw and cooked, and that was unintentional,” a Health spokesperson said. Needless to say, the rule won’t be enforced as written.
“Properly handled seafood and fish is no more or less dangerous than chicken or beef,” said Susan Povich, who’s thinking of expanding her Red Hook Lobster Pound through street vending.
She was relieved to learn of the department’s mistake: “That makes total sense,” she said. “Who would want to eat raw fish and seafood from a cart?”
The city could not immediately say if ceviche sales were legal.