The Secret Sauce to a Flawless Event: Why You Need a Catering Agreement

Discover the overlooked details that can make or break your event. Learn why a well-crafted catering agreement is your secret weapon.

When planning an event, food often takes center stage. But behind that gourmet spread, lies the unsung hero—the catering agreement. This document is essential for both caterers and event organizers.

Menu Details

Your catering agreement should specify the menu, the number of servings, and even portion sizes.

Example: “Menu includes Caesar salad, herb-grilled chicken, and chocolate lava cake. Servings for 100 guests.”

Event Schedule

Your agreement should list key event timings like setup, service, and teardown. Example: “Catering staff will arrive at 12 PM for setup and will complete teardown by 10 PM.”

Payment and Costs

Be transparent about your charges. Include itemized costs for food, service, and any other fees like transportation. Example: “Total cost includes $1,000 for food, $300 for service staff, and $100 for transportation.”

Special Requirements

Any dietary restrictions or special needs should be clearly outlined. Example: “10 vegetarian meals and 5 gluten-free meals will be included.”

Cancellation Policy

Include a clause about cancellations, as well as potential refunds or penalties. Example: “50% deposit is non-refundable if cancellation occurs within two weeks of the event.”

Responsibilities and Liabilities

Explain what the caterer is and isn’t responsible for. Example: “Caterer is responsible for food safety but not for personal items left at the venue.”

Licenses and Permits

Ensure the agreement states that the caterer must comply with all local health codes and have the necessary permits. Example: “Caterer must have a valid food handler’s permit and comply with local health codes.”


Don’t underestimate the power of a well-crafted catering agreement. It’s the backbone that holds your gourmet event together, ensuring everyone leaves satisfied, including you.