Unique eateries are popping up all over the United States and people are gobbling up not only some of the best comfort food around but nowadays vendors or getting creative with special items and gourmet specialties to fill the bellies of their customers. If you enjoy the food industry, and if looking for an excellent business opportunity, your best bet would be to check out the details on how to start a food truck business, with high potential of outstanding
growth and succeeding in the food service business.
The reasons for the growth of the food truck or pushcart business shows that people have less time to spend for lunch time. They would either grab something quick and get on their way,while some people prefer this food option over routine fast food items and comparing it to tailgating extravaganza at major events.
Understandably In today’s many food choices, food lovers are frequenting the street vendors to satisfy their taste buds leaving the fast food chains as a second choice.
Vendors are offering services to daily individuals who seeking out a decent inexpensive breakfast, lunch, dinner or late night grumblies, and are rewarded with hundreds of repeat customers.
Why a food truck business?
- Not surprising, this billion dollar industry has seen a steady growth since 2007 with no end in site.
- Location can be any place, where it is permitted, such as downtown big cities, or business districts, stadiums, train stations, airports, tourist attractions, special events, professional games, conventions, festivals parks and college campuses, wherever people are, they always want food. Actually anywhere large crowds gather you offer your services.
- You can be your own boss, present your cooking skills and socialize with people.
- What you want to check out before you start your food business is all regulations that cities and health departments require. Get in contact with your local health department and city code enforcement agent to check out any licenses, permits or inspections that are required.
- Many of the requirements are basically the same as running a restaurant when it comes to serving food to the public, some requiring special equipment, cooking and food handling requirements are HUGE
- In some major cities, or events there is a limit to the number of trucks or food carts that can be in operation in a geographic area, leaving some independent food servers to be put on a waiting list, so get the facts before planting your truck
- Making a decision between getting started with a food truck or a push cart will depend on the money you have to invest. There are opportunities to find used food carts or trucks on places such as ebay or Usedvending.com You can find available from “hotdog” signs, portable equipment, to warming units that you can buy to customize your needs.
- Going with a food truck can cost more but your cooking opportunities will be greater than just a push cart
- Pulling in the customer’s takes having a special food niche,. The more creative you can get with food and presentation, your opportunities can expand.
- Unlike a restaurant, a food truck or pushcart can have favorite foods available right outside a major venue
- You can actually move around if the location you are in is not pulling that great, the action to moving where the crowds are, can be done to grab the most business in a small time frame (such as before or after a big game or event)
- Customers are finding that the cost of “street food” cost less than in restaurants
- Food and condiments can be customized right in front of the customer
- With low overhead you have more flexibility of when you open and close with no actual set hours
- Depending on the size of the truck or cart you are considering, your space could be limited, with the possibility of running out of food and supplies
- Depending on the size of your food servicing business, moving around to other locations could be restricted
- Keeping up with the health code regulations, you certainly do not want to have a issue with food safety or sanitation where the health department could shut you down
- The weekly hours could be long or could be short, depending on the crowds, the weather and competition
- Weather conditions for the vendor workers is a huge issue when it comes to working outdoors all day long in the extreme heat or extreme cold
What customers are finding is the great choices of food that is available. When thinking of a street vendor what comes to mind is the everyday hotdog, and bbq ribs. Now vendors are getting into the act of offering unique items such as specialized salads, healthier vegetarian items, food dishes from other countries, all sorts of comfort foods, specialty sandwiches, platters, and huge variety of tasty gourmet food to meet the needs of hungry people.
What I found interesting is that vendors are coming up with niches to satisfy the hungry masses.
Depending on the type of food you want to sell or the type of people you want to sell to, here are a few things to consider:
- What types of foods are popular in the area you will be located
- What types of foods are easy to prepare and transport
- Do you stick with just the basics or do you expand your culinary experience and offer customers unique items
- Are your customers looking for something to carry with them, or will they mingle around and eat on the spot
- Breakfast, lunch dinner, late night hungers, what time frame will you cover? Once you get established, your regular customers will expect you to be there
You can become profitable when you take into consideration such things as, scaling down your needs, finding the right suppliers, being organized, have a reasonable budget, have a good understanding of the daily operations and especially the needs of your customers.
Food truck operators have found a service that people have come to depend on, not to mention the love of some good eatin. Local and national food truck competitions can be found wherever there is large gatherings. When making your decision on if and how to start a food truck business, take into consideration that this type of business can also be done in your retirement years to pull in extra income, to stay active and to socialize with the world.
Take a look at the sources that I have provided here to get you on the “food truck” to success.
Never Stop Learning…Angela