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Wild game serving permit

A wild game serving permit is required only when either, or both, of the following apply:

  1. the location at which the wild game will be served is: a restaurant, club, hotel, boarding house, tavern, logging camp or mining camp, AND any of the game is wild deer, elk, bear, squirrel, game bird, or game fish taken from inland waters;
    OR
  2. a fee of any kind is charged or collected to participate AND any of the game is wild deer, elk, bear, squirrel, game bird, game fish or any other wild animal that has a bag or possession limit and the season is closed for that species (such as rabbit or turtle during the closed season).

Note: This permit is not needed if only serving farm-raised deer, farm-raised game birds or farm-raised fish.

Time line for processing the permit

Once received by the Department of Natural Resources, a permit will generally be processed within two working days. You are encouraged to make the application at least 10 days prior to your event in order to ensure the permit is received and processed without delay.

Once your permit is approved by the DNR you may be contacted by DATCP who will provide you with food safety information.

Note: Wild Game Serving Permits (Form 9400-175) no longer require a signature from a DATCP sanitarian.

Permit application (Form 9400-175) [PDF]

Frequently asked questions

  1. Question: What are the precautions for eating deer harvested with lead ammunition?

    Answer: Please see Precautions for eating deer harvested with lead ammunition.

  2. Question: Where do I get information regarding CWD concerns and consumption of venison?

    Answer: Please see Recommendations for hunters: Simple precautions [exit DNR].

  3. Question: How do I contact the Health Department in my area?

    Answer: You may contact the State of Wisconsin Department of Health Services at 608-266-2835.

  4. Question: If I do not get a response/approval regarding my wild game serving permit, who do I contact?

    Answer: Please send an email to DNRDLCSInfo@wisconsin.gov requesting a status for the application. Customer service representatives are available seven days a week from 7 a.m until 10 p.m.

  5. Question: When do I need a wild game serving permit?

    Answer: When the location at which the wild game will be served is: a restaurant, club, hotel, boarding house, tavern, logging camp or mining camp, AND any of the game is wild deer, elk, bear, squirrel, game bird or game fish taken from inland waters; OR a fee of any kind is charged or collected to participate AND any of the game is wild deer, elk, bear, squirrel, game bird, game fish or any other wild animal that has a bag or possession limit and the season is closed for that species (such as rabbit or turtle during the closed season). Note, this permit is NOT needed if only serving farm-raised deer, farm-raised game birds or farm-raised fish.

  6. Question: How far in advance do I have to send in the application?

    Answer: It is recommended that the application be submitted at least 10 business days prior to the event.

  7. Question: What are my options for submitting the permit?

    Answer: If you have access to a computer and the internet, you can submit your application electronically which should result in a shorter turnaround time.

    Printed copies should be directed to the Game Feed Permit, Department of Natural Resources, Box 7924 Madison, WI 53707-7924 Attention CS/1

    Otherwise, you can contact the DNR Call Center and request a paper copy to be sent to you. Mail completed forms to the DNR in Madison or fax it to 608-261-4380.

  8. Question: If I have any additional questions, who can I contact?

    Answer: You may contact the DNR Call Center at 1-888-WDNR-Info (1-888-936-7463) or email DNRDLCSInfo@wisconsin.gov.

  9. Question: Can we have a rain date listed on the permit due to emergency situations?

    Answer: No, if you have to change the date of the event, please contact the DNR Call Center at the number noted above. The Call Center will modify your application electronically with the new date.

  10. Question: What are the rules regarding a restaurant preparing/serving my wild caught fish?

    Answer: A restaurant or temporary restaurant may serve fish taken from the wild for the individual who caught the fish, or to his or her guests, without obtaining a Wild Game Serving Permit if all of the following conditions are satisfied:

    • the fish are legally taken;
    • while the fish are at the restaurant and before the fish are prepared for eating, they are stored in a cooler, which may be a portable cooler, which does not contain any other food, the area where the fish are prepared for eating is washed and sanitized before and after preparation of the fish, and all items used to prepare and serve the fish are washed in a dishwasher after such use; and
    • a restaurant or temporary restaurant may make a pecuniary profit from preparing and serving these fish.
  11. Question: Can I serve my wild game along with regular food?

    Answer: Yes you can, however, there might be some DATCP restrictions and you should contact them at 608-224-4923.

Last revised: Thursday March 16 2017