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The Eight Greatest Food Truck Memes of All Time

Memes are images that include a funny or entertaining message. No doubt you’ve seen examples of memes shared on social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram. Meme gained an incredible amount of popularity since they can be quickly consumed and easily shared on social media.

Memes were first created around pop culture topics like television shows, politics, and news items and due to the increasingly popularity of the industry food trucks as well. In today’s post, we wanted to compile and organize some of the best food truck memes we’ve found across the internet. Not surprisingly, there are some pretty creative examples of images that have already been published and can be viewed below.

This Ryan Gosling inspired food truck meme is one of our favorites. Any meme featuring Ryan Gosling on the internet is pretty much guaranteed to perform well. Photo Credit: Pinterest.

 

Jim Carrey has a bunch of popular memes from classic movies like Dumb and Dumber. Photo Credit: Meme Maker.

Willie Wonka is another super popular form of meme created on the internet. There might be tens of thousands of these on all sorts of different topics. Photo credit: Make a Meme.

Oh shoot! There’s a food truck festival today. Photo Credit: Pinterest

Here’s a meme inspired by the movie Toy Story. Food Trucks. Food Trucks Everywhere! Photo Credit: Quick Meme

Here’s one for fans of Game of Thrones. – Photo Credit: Facebook

We couldn’t leave out fans of the television series Parks and Rec. originally broadcast on NBC with this Ron Swanson meme. Photo Credit: Meme Generator

Even Donald Trump has a taco truck meme.

How to Create Your Own Food Truck Meme

If you want to create a food truck meme of your own, you can do so without any design skills using tools like MemeMaker.net. With this online tool, all you need to do is select a photo and add a descriptive headline of your own. There are a dozen or so similar and free online tools that will allow you to create your own custom memes too.

After you come up with a clever headline and snappy statement you can grab a shareable link to post on social media or your website. We hope you enjoy making some creative food truck memes of your own very soon!

Do you have a favorite meme of your own? Be sure to share it in the comments below.

Are Food Truck Owners Required to Get a CDL?

Are you required to get a Commercial Driver’s License or CDL if you drive a food truck? In most situations, you don’t need a CDL to operate a food truck. A standard Class D driver’s license issued by the state you live is sufficient to legally drive and operate a food truck.

There are of course always exceptions to this general guideline. We will spend the rest of the post exploring some of the rare situations where you might actually need a CDL to drive a food truck. If you’re unsure, make sure you contact the Department of Motor Vehicles in the state you plan to operate for more information and guidance. Requirements for CDLs vary slightly from state to state so it’s important to understand the local laws.

Built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks.

Rare Situations You Would Need a Food Truck CDL

Weight: If you plan to operate a food truck with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) 26,001 pounds or more then you will need to obtain a CDL.  The total weight of a unit includes the mobile kitchen equipment and employees that are expected to be on and operate the unit.

Although food trucks are heavy, a typical food truck won’t come close exceeding the 26,001 pound weight limit. Since the weight of a food truck is dependent on the size of the unit and equipment installed the final weight will vary. But based on our experience a typical food truck will weigh 12,000 – 16,000 pounds. You find food truck weight estimates for trailers, food trucks, and food buses in our previous post.

If you plan to convert a school bus into food bus, you’ll want to keep weight considerations in mind and may actually need a CDL. Depending on the type of school bus you acquire it may fall under or over the weight requirement depending on the size. Some larger school buses weigh approximately 30,000 pounds when you include seating so this is a scenario where you might need to obtain a CDL.

If you have a food trailer that you plan to tough to events that is over 10,000 pounds, a CDL will also be a requirement. Even large 22″ food trailers weigh about 8,000 pounds so most vendors will fall well below the threshold.

Passengers: You are required to obtain a CDL regardless of vehicle size if you plan to transport 16 people or more. This 16 person limit includes the driver.

In our decade and a half experience manufacturing food trucks, we’ve never built a food unit for someone that intended to transporting more than 16 people. When you get more than five people working inside a larger sized food truck, you’ll hit a threshold where there are literally too many cooks in the kitchen to operate comfortably.

The Final Word

Bottom line, most food truck owners don’t have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Odds are you won’t need one either if you don’t fall into one of the rare scenarios listed above. If you want to learn more about the CDL process, check out the informative resources below:

Who Is Required to Get a CDL? This piece is published on TruckingTruth.com and outlines in plain English who is required to obtain a CDL. The piece also explains the exceptions for individuals working on farms or driving an RV.

CDL Class Types: Learn about the different class types for CDL driver’s licenses.

How to Start a Healthy Juice Bar Food Truck in 2019

Happy 2019! The start of a new year always marks a time for reflection and looking ahead to the future. Some of the top resolutions you’ll find each year is the goal to eat better and get healthier overall. According to a 2017 poll by YouGov, eating healthier is actually at the very top of the resolution list, tied with saving more money and working out.

While eating better is a common goal it’s not as easy to accomplish as you might already know. Eating consistently healthy meals means investing the the time required to meal plan, prepare and shop for healthy food items.  This can be tough if you’re busy running a business, have a job, or a family to take care of. It’s easy for busy people to fall back into a routine of eating fast food or other meals out of convenience only a few weeks into the new year.

Enter the business opportunity of the increasingly popular juice bar food truck. A smoothie or juice truck provides customers a no-hassle way to get their daily serving of fruits and vegetables. The juice and smoothie bar industry overall has continued to grow over the past 5 years according to IBISWorld industry reports. According to the report industry revenue will hit $3 billion 2019. In the United States alone there will be approximately 5,861 businesses that fit into this business classification.

With a mobile food unit, you can deliver this healthy product to customers with money to spend, but the lack of time to make a healthy drinks themselves. Some proven popular locations for smoothie trucks to serve are at large corporate offices and special events that focus on active lifestyles like 5K runs. You can take a video tour of a Smoothie King ProMaster Food Truck below that was built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks below.

Depending on your needs a truck, trailer or step-van can be all be converted into mobile juice bars so plenty of flexibility in the build out of these units.

You should expect to invest well over $100,000 to start a retail juice bar location. You will be able to invest well under $50,000 on a mobile juice unit. Aside from a lower cost to get started, some of the unique advantages to mobile juice bars is that you won’t be locked into a longterm lease. One of the biggest risks with a juice bar when starting out is finding a profitable retail location. If you end up opening in a location without sufficient foot traffic or the wrong demographics of people, the business could fail. Finding the perfect location is not as important when going mobile because  you can move to greener pastures at any time.

Crafting the Right Menu

Coming up with a menu for your juice truck is part art, part science. You may need to tweak the recipes of the beverages you sell depending on the location you plant to vend. If you are willing to listen to your customers and continually refine the menu overtime, you’ll figure out what’s most profitable.

With that being said here are a few type of beverages you should consider for your future menu:

Cold-Pressed Juice – This is an increasingly popular form of juice that is made without heating up the fruit to retain its vitamins and minerals.

Organic Juices – If you’re catering to a more healthy conscious audience, knowing whether or not the fruit you use is organic or not is important. You will need to pass along the added cost of organic ingredients to customers.

Traditional Smoothies – Traditional smoothies made with fruit have gotten a bad wrap as of late since so many of them contain high amounts of sugar. Still these beverages remain top sellers at juice bars nationally.

Coffee and Other Beverages – While you may not specialize in serving coffee or other drinks, it can be beneficial to offer this beverage. It’s not at all uncommon for juice establishments to sell a type of coffee that aligns with overall mission of the business.

Equipment List Considerations for a Juice Truck

Some basic things to keep in mind is that if you want to keep the cost lower of these units, a van or trailer conversion will be more lower cost than a food truck. If you plan to serve drinks and basic add-ons like pre-made muffins or energy bars a van can be a great option and will run well with regular maintenance for years to come.

If you plan to have more than two people working in the juice van or if you need larger menu, a van won’t typically work due to the space limitations. If you need to fryers, prep table, coffee makers, and blenders all installed onboard a step-van the equipment can be extremely tight. Give us a call if you’re working to determine the layout and type of equipment that will fit comfortably into your unit.

The final equipment consideration to make is that blenders, ice machines, and other equipment that you need on a juice truck is going to take a lot of power to run. If you plan to serve gourmet coffees on the unit, you’ll need even more power and will need a generator with sufficient wattage. You can read our previous post on how to determine the electrical power needs of a food truck if you want to go more in-depth on this topic.

Here is a list of commonly installed equipment on a juice truck: 

  • Prep Table / Cutting Boards – You’ll need plenty of space to cut fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Refrigerator – This will keep product like milk, fruits and veggies cool.
  • Ice Machine – Products like smoothies and juice require ice so you’ll need a reliable machine that can keep up with sales volume.
  • Commercial Juicers – A way to quickly extract pulp and seeds from oranges and other product.
  • Commercial Blenders – You’ll need at least two reliable blenders installed on the unit to keep up with rush time periods.
  • 3-Compartment Sink + Hand Washing Sink – This is a requirement for washing knifes, spoons, cups and other utensils on the truck.
  • Coffee Maker – Even if you specialize in juice and smoothies many vendors increase their sales by offering coffee as well.
  • Display Unit – We recommend installing a customer facing display unit into the vehicle to increase sales. You could choose to display food or drinks in this area.

Market Analysis and Competition

Before jumping into any business opportunity, it’s wise to check out what the local competition is doing in your area. More than likely there will already be some brick-and-mortar juice bar locations operating successfully in your area. Two of the most popular franchises in this industry are Smoothie King and Jamba Juice. Smoothie King has over 1,000 locations globally with an average gross revenue of $681,724 for the top 25% of locations in the United States. Jamba Juice has over 900 locations according to their franchise website. You can’t hit this level of locations without strong market demand for the product.

If you do plan to open a smoothie truck, you should visit these local stores to view their menu and taste their products. You should also hang out in these locations and observe the clientele. What kind of people frequent these establishments? How busy are the locations? Does this seem like the type of business you would like to operate? What is the price being charged in your area for a small, medium, and large size juice? This is an easy and fast way to help determine if this is a business opportunity you would like to explore further.

7 Rules Every LA Food Truck Owner Must Know! [Checklist]

Know the rules before you start your food truck business in Los Angeles

In this regulation article we’ll be covering the top 7 rules that ALL Los Angeles food truck owners must know if they are going to be running a food truck in Los Angeles.  Please stay tuned to this series of articles for other cities as we publish them. The best way to stay in touch is to join our email list below in the red box.

Flaming Pizza Food Truck Built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks.

1. Street Signs

“Signs, Signs, Everywhere a Sign,” you know the song right?  Los Angeles is just as bad as all of the other major cities and their is no special exceptions for food trucks, even despite Los Angeles having some of the most food truck friendly laws in the country.

You must obey the posted parking restrictions, including, but not limited to, restrictions on stopping, loading, and parking from either posted signs or painted curbs” [LAMC 80.73(b)2(B)]

2. Stick to the sidewalk

This seems like a no-brainer but apparently there have been food trucks who have tried to serve their food with the service window facing the street?!  Happy they got the sale… sad their customer got ran over by an oncoming car!  Don’t let this happen to your day and be sure to know the rules and serve your food with your service window facing the sidewalk.

You must dispense food from the sidewalk side of the street. No truck may dispense food street side” [LAMC 80.73(b)2(C)]

3. Trash (part 1)

You must have a trash can outside your food truck and it needs to be clearly marked as a trash can and have a sign attached that requests customers to dump their trash in the receptacle.  Having a trash can inside of the truck wont cut the mustard! We recommend this solid, 50-gallon trash can with easy rolling wheels for easy movement.

You must have a CONSPICUOUS litter receptacle which is clearly marked with a sign requesting its use by patrons [LAMC 80.73(b)2(D)]

4. Trash (part 2)

In addition to having a clearly marked trash can, you actually have to remove it and take it with you when you’re done serving food.  Imagine that.  Oh, and no cigarette butts either.  So make sure you buy a well-constructed trash can with wheels on it for easy pick up after your long day.

Trash shall be removed from all areas VISIBLE around the truck. The truck shall take all bags with them when vacating an area. Trash is to include all materials originally dispensed from the truck as well as any other items left by patrons, such as cigarette butts [LAMC 80.73(b)2(E)]

5. Watch your head

Well, you don’t want to knock your customers out before you sell them some food right? So make sure you got the clearance man!  Most food trucks should have the 7′ clearance you need, but best to consult with a licensed food truck builder just in case.

The “hatch” of a truck shall be at least 7 feet above the sidewalk in order to avoid patron collisions  [LAMC 56.08(e) disputed] 

6. Overnight

Food trucks must be parked overnight in a commissary which is basically a huge commercial kitchen with some parking spaces in or around it. Each major city has one or two of them and they typically charge food truck owners for a wide range of services. NO…the owner cannot park his “Bad Ass Burger” truck in his driveway after he’s done for the day.  Why?  Because it might explode as we have seen and reported on many, many, times.

Trucks must be parked at a Commissary every night. [Cal Code: 114295(c)]

7. Bathroom, please?

You know that sign in restaurant bathrooms instructing all employees to wash their hands before they return for work?  Yeah, turns out the same thing applies to food truck employees, but instead of the city trusting them to do it on their truck….they require a public/private bathroom to be available within 200 feet of the truck while serving for over an hour.  The letter isn’t needed any longer.

Trucks must have a bathroom letter from an accessible bathroom with hot water (103-108 degrees), single serving soap, paper towels, kept in clean working order if vending for over an hour  (Cal Code: 114315)

Here is an epic checklist you can share with your fellow food truckers if you operate in Los Angeles! Note that every city and state you plan to operate in will have different laws. Generally speaking, larger cities will have more specific rules and regulations than smaller jurisdictions. Just remember that these laws were not put in place to be a nuisance to vendors. They were implemented to help keep the public safe, which is the goal of any reputation food truck owner as well.

Food Truck Weddings: The Ultimate Planning Guide for 2019

How to plan for the cutest food truck wedding reception.

A Super Food Truck Wedding.

Food truck weddings are no longer just a trend and are now a serious and often used option for budget conscious brides or anyone with a hipster flare to them.

On your most important day, you want to get the details right so we’ve put together this fantastic resource for you to reference when you’re planning your food truck wedding.

The most important thing to know right off the bat is you need to plan ahead.

Duh?

You’re good at that, right? We thought so, that’s why you’re here.

Even more important is having the confidence to negotiate with the food truck owner and you’ll get that confidence once you know exactly how a food truck wedding should be organized.

1.  Do the Math

A well run and experienced food truck can handle about 75-100 guests during an event and since the average American wedding has around 178 guests, you might want to think about hiring two food trucks.  So what will one or two food trucks cost you?

Well, that depends on a lot of things. The more popular the truck you try to hire, the more expensive it’s going to be.  Don’t be offended, though.

It’s not because they’re being elitist or difficult, it just means that their schedule is a little tighter because of their popularity. Keep in mind, if you try to hire the truck too far out then you risk them bailing on your special day for an unannounced festival that pops up.

Keep in mind, if you try to hire the food truck too far out then you risk them bailing on your special day for an unannounced festival that pops up (where they will make a lot more money). But if you run it too close, then you might be stuck with that questionable taco truck from the down the street.  No bueno!

If you need help organizing all the wedding planning for your special day and want to cut out the significant cost of a wedding planner, check out this guide from The Knot. This book offers worksheets, checklists, and timelines created by professional wedding planners you can utilize for a little more than the price of a cup of coffee.

Here comes the Math

We recommend trying to schedule around two months ahead of the wedding to be safe.

The average American wedding is running about $66 dollars per guest for reception catering so if you’re running the average number of guests, then you’re looking at around $8,844 in spend.

You should be able to negotiate $20 a guest for the night which would put you at $5,360 for two trucks…saving you around $3,500 bucks!

One blogger recently got married and was quoted around $2,200 for one truck for all of her guests.  So it just depends on your negotiating skills and the specific truck you get in contact with.

2. Consider the Cuisine

A very important subject indeed.  Do you have any vegetarian or vegan guests attending your wedding (probably)?

Do you have anyone with food allergies?  Are you considering boring burgers or a Japanese-Thai Fusion food truck (we made this one up)?

It’s your family and friends so most likely you know a lot about them, but what about the “plus ones.” Everyone has that one cousin or friend who is a serial dater and you can never predict who (or what) they might bring.  So be sure to ask with your RSVP for any known food allergies or other no go’s.

Once you have accounted for the most stringent of guests then you can decide on what’s going to please the crowd the most. Or you can just pick something you like and damn the rest of the free-loading guests.  (Just kidding).

Some important things to consider while thinking about the cuisine is also flow of your wedding.

Will it creep into the late hours of the night?  Then be sure you have some greasy items on the menu to sober your guests up.  Are you putting on a Billy idol “white wedding”?

Then probably smart to avoid any BBQ dishes or anything that will stain and ruin your guest’s clothes.  Who cares about their cleaning bills, think about your reception photos!

3. Hire more Help

So, unfortunately, your fabulous food truck won’t come with any hot wait staff to impress your guests so you’re going to have to prepare a little.

See, food trucks are a trendy way to impress your guests and they are more economical, but the last thing you want is a bunch of ravenous guests waiting in an hour long line for their food when they should be admiring you in your cute dress.

Wait staff can be really helpful to keep your guests distracted and can be done economically.

The more accommodating you want to be will determine how many additional wait staff you’ll need to hire.

Not doing a plated dinner will save you big time.  You still might think about hiring waitresses and waiter staff (about 1-5) to roam the party offering pre-made drinks (champagne or wine) or cleaning up after the guests when they are finished with their meal from the food truck.

The point is to distract your guests or break up the line at your food truck. Another hip idea is to have someone running a step and repeat or a photo booth near the truck for a cool distraction and lasting memories.

It’s better to be safe than sorry when hiring help for a wedding.

4.  Ambiance

Ambiance, is obviously the “bow on the package”.  It’s what helps set the mood.

You’re already pretty hip for having a food truck at your wedding, but what else can you do to complete the look? Here are some killer ideas we’ve seen out there:

Pitch a white tent over the food truck (ventilate it properly) to create a cozier and intimate feeling.

  • Hang lights on the inside and have tall cocktail tables about so guests can circle around them to keep the conversation going
  • Position the bar next to the food truck to help break up the food line and keep everyone drinking and having a good time
  • Post a handwritten menu on a chalkboard outside the truck near the line so guests know what to expect when they get up to the service window.
  • Changing the name of the dishes to represent close family or friends.  ex: “Best Friend Burger”

These are just a few ideas to get the wheels turning for you, but essentially there are countless ways to add some panache to your food truck wedding, but the best place to start is to mirror the theme of your truck.

If you’ve ordered up an Asian-Fusion food truck for your special day then go ahead and add some Asian elements to tie in with it.  Maybe it’s an Italian food truck so how about an Italian singer in the background.  We’re confident you’ll figure it out.

5. When & How to Capture the Moment

The final piece of the puzzle is the lasting moments that you and your guests will remember.

And we’re not talking about your drunk Uncle being cut off from the open bar either!

We’re talking about the photographs.

Your newly hired food truck should have a fresh wash for the occasion (don’t forget to demand it) but it’s not going to have “blinged” out wheels or be purring like a kitten, so keep that in mind.

You most likely will want several photographs of the truck with your guests around it eating and having a good time but you don’t want every photo to have the food truck in it so be mindful of where you position the unit.

We recommend not making it the focal point of the reception layout but rather off to the side.  But not too far off to the side where your guests have to hike 500 feet just to grab a drink and a stuffed meatball.

Close enough for quick access to food, but far enough away where the truck won’t interfere with the band, DJ or dance floor.

We hoped we helped remind you of some of the most crucial things to remember when hiring your food truck for your wedding reception.

When you’re ready to book your food truck then we recommend downloading our Food Truck Wedding Planner Guide.  Want to hear a first-hand account of a couple as they planned for their food truck wedding reception then go here.

Should You Take a Food Truck Training Class?

Why you should take Food Truck Classes.

Running a food truck is just as hard if not harder than running a restaurant.  Would you start a restaurant without any formal training? Probably not, right?

You should be taking training of some sort before you get started on type of serious business endeavor. There’s literally no profession or real business you can start with a realistic chance of success. Would a dentist hang up their shingle without first attending school and acquiring the necessary certifications? We certainly hope not!

But for some reason there are plenty of people that think they can start a food truck business without any sort of mentorship. Keep in mind that there are plenty of different ways to learn. You can certainly learn a lot of the concepts and numbers behind operating a food truck business in a class, but working part-time or being an intern on a food truck can often be even more valuable. Ideally, you would get trained on both aspects of the business before rolling out on your own.

A lot of community colleges are now offering food truck classes and we think the perfect mix is online training and class based training now that they are being offered. Also, community college classes are always more affordable than universities and you might even be able to figure out a way to get some of your books and schooling paid for with a scholarship.

Tony’s Clam Chowder – Built By M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks.

What should you be learning?

This is really tough to say because each food truck owner brings a different and unique set of skills and knowledge to their business but here is a general list of things you should be competent in before you set out to start your truck:

  • Food prep and Food Safety
  • Marketing and Menu basics
  • Managerial Leadership and Conflict Resolution
  • Truck Safety and Rules of the Road
  • Food Truck Regulations for your city
  • Food Truck Finance
  • Marketing
  • How to Pull off a Catering Event
  • How to Create a Weekly Operations Schedule

This is a basic and sparse list of everything you’ll master as an experienced food truck owner but you don’t have to know it all before you get started.  After all, you’ll never be a food truck owner if you don’t take the first step, right?

Start your apprenticeship

We highly recommend reaching out to a local food truck and ask to tag along or work for free.  Yes, we said work for free.  Every great technician, professional or master of any craft always served under an apprenticeship.  You should too.

Pick your favorite food truck and call the owner up.  Tell him about your dream and offer to help for free for a few months.  It’s gonna suck, but its the best way to learn the job on the go and those are when the real lessons get absorbed the best.  Good ‘ol hands on training.

This is one of the approaches that Dave Krolak of the of the Cas’ Pierogi and Kielbasa food truck used to start his business. Instead of going it alone, he reached out directly to one of the prominent local food truck owners in the area and offered to compensate him for training. That modest investment in training has yielded all sorts of benefits for Krolak’s business in return.

First, he got an understanding of what it really takes to operate a food truck from someone that’s successfully operating the business. Questions that could take other inexperienced vendors weeks to figure out on their own could be quickly solved by Dave’s mentor.

In addition to a better understanding of the business this arrangement yielded some immediate monetary benefits as well. As you may know, a lot of owning a food truck is getting to know the players in your community. Specifically, getting to know the people that are organizing events in your town, other food truck owners that understand the most profitable daily service locations, and the corporate contacts that book catering events.

Having a teacher rapidly increased the speed the Dave’s food truck business that would have otherwise took years to experience the same levels of success. Why not fast forward through early stages of trying to figure out who the local players are and where the biggest events are in your area? Instead find and compensate a mentor to send your success into hyper drive.

Crepe Myrtle Cafe Food Truck – Built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks

Apply what you learn

You don’t have to have your food truck to apply what you’re learning already.  If you can try a pop-up or catering event for a friends birthday party…then apply and practice these skills before you start your food truck. Imagine yourself in the food truck while you’re practicing some of these skill sets.

If you’re putting together your business plan for your food truck with all of the financials, apply that new knowledge to your business as well.  Most of the skill sets your learning translate over to what you’re currently doing so flex these muscles as much as possible.

If you’re going to be investing tens of thousands of dollars into a food truck or hundreds of thousands into a restaurant, it makes sense to spend some time investing in yourself through classes, a mentor, or reading blogs and blogs like this. While taking a class is no guarantee of longterm success it will certainly increase your chances.

Huntsville Shopping Center: Alabama Food Truck Park?

Huntsville Shopping Center debuts Food Truck Park

If there is anything that is more trending than food trucks right now then it is certainly the “food truck parks” and if little ‘ol Huntsville, Alabama is getting one then you know we’ve hit mainstream.  It’s not the fanciest of food truck park ideas as they decided to go with a mix of indoor and outdoor space with only a little character and styling but just having one helps move the industry forward another inch.

If you love food truck fare, but aren’t fond of long lines or extreme temperatures, a new street food option is coming soon to the Creekside Shopping Center parking lot in Huntsville.

Pinhook Provisions Street Food Park

Amie Vaughn White, who works for South Realty, plans to open Pinhook Provisions Street Food Park, a new year-round mobile dining hotspot on 2315 Bob Wallace Ave. featuring ample parking, climate-controlled indoor seating, outdoor seating with fans, restrooms, yard games, live music and more.

White, who does design work on the side, said the idea began brewing last year when she was with a client in Atlanta and saw a similar venue in the Howell Mill area. The concept started coming to fruition about two months ago and is now on target to launch Aug. 1 across from Jerry Damson Honda.

“I love the food truck rallies (in Huntsville), but they’re slammed and they’re hot and there’s nowhere to go to the restroom,” she said. “I thought, ‘Why couldn’t Huntsville have its own food truck park?’”

Founded in 1974, South Realty is a Huntsville-based commercial and residential real estate firm that owns the Creekside retail center, which is home to Marco’s Pizza, Ideal Exercise, The Printer Connection and other tenants. White, who has been working on and off at her father’s company since she was 15, is now director of development for the small business.

Named after Pinhook Creek, the park will accommodate up to 12 food trucks, have more than 70 parking spots, include trash removal and recycling, feature picnic tables and outdoor fans, and offer dog-friendly amenities such as community water bowls and pickup stations. It will also provide Wi-Fi service and two entrances and exits for easy access.

“I want it to be a destination,” she said. “I imagine it to be somewhere that strikes a balance between high-end and down to earth, so you can bring your kids but you can also enjoy a nice atmosphere.”

The park, which will open with a breakfast and lunch rotation, will later expand to offer dinner and weekend hours, as well as special events. The daily breakfast shift will run from 7-10 a.m. and lunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the week.

The Brief History of Food Trucks in America (1691 – Present)

Food trucks in America are considered to be a brand new movement. However, mobile food has been alive and kicking as far back as the 1600s when street cart owners were considered by some to be unfair competition for brick-and-mortar restaurant owners.

In this post, we take a brief look at the history of food trucks in America. From the first street vendors in the 1600s, to the chuck wagons of the Wild West, all the way to the modern gourmet food trucks that we’re familiar with today.

1691 – New York City (previously New Amsterdam) starts regulating street vendors selling food and other items from vending carts around the city.

Inside a gourmet food truck. 

History of Food Trucks: 1800’s

1850’s – Dining cars begin serving cross country train passengers with meals.

1866 – Charles Goodnight invents the “Chuck Wagon” to feed cattlemen and wagon trains traversing the old West.

1872 – The first make-shift diner is setup in a horse-drawn freight wagon.

1894 – Ivy League universities start to attract sausage vendors who sell their hot dogs outside the student dorms and their carts became known as “dog wagons”.

History of Food Trucks: 1900’s

1917 – The US Army mobile canteens (or field kitchens) start feeding troops.

1936 – Oscar Mayer introduces the first portable hot dog cart, The Weiner Mobile.

1950’s – Ice cream trucks become a thing and start selling their frozen treats on every street in America.

1960’s – Roach coaches are born and begin selling food to construction sites around the country.

1974 – The East Los Angeles bar gets the nation’s first taco truck when Raul Martinez converts an old ice cream truck.

1980’s – Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ attracts “grease trucks” selling “Fat Sandwiches” to college students.

History of Food Trucks: 2000’s

A Modern Food Van Built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks.

2004 – New York celebrates their food cart heritage after The Street Vendor Project creates the Vendy Awards. A competition that selects and celebrates NYC’s best street food vendors.

July 2006 – Wikipedia adds “food truck” to their data list and creates the history of food trucks around the world.

November 2008 – Roy Choi hits a homerun with his Kogi BBQ food truck in Los Angeles, selling Asian infused tacos to the masses.

January 2010 – Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association (SoCalMFVA) is formed by Matt Geller, becoming the first member organized entity created to protect the rights of food truck owners.

May 2010 – The National Restaurant Association portions some 1,500 square feet to food truck exhibits at its annual convention in Chicago, signaling a recognition of their importance.

August 2010 – The mobile food industry gets its first television program, the Great Food Truck Race and become an overnight hit.

September 2010 – The US government adds a reference guide called the “Tips for Starting Your Own Street Food Business” to its small business website, www.business.gov.

October 2010 – Zagat guide announces that they will begin to provide reviews of food trucks in 2011.

November 2010 – Los Angeles begins to rank food trucks with letter grades, just like their cousin restaurants.

January 2011 – President Barak Obama “Tweets” out that his favorite food truck in Washington DC is D.C. Empanadas.  City erupts in pride!

June 2011 – New York issues the first limited liquor license to the Pera Food Truck.

August 2011 – The Gap clothing retailer launches a nationwide ad campaign marketing a retro style jean with the use of a food truck in it.

February 2012 – NFL Super Bowl allows food trucks in to serve fans in Indianapolis.

June 2014 – The National Food Truck Association (NFTA and not to be confused with NAFTA) is formed creating the first national association of food truck associations.

August 2014 – The movie “Chef” is released which serves as the first ever motion picture to be centered around the story of a food truck and its owner.

Spring 2015 – Hundreds of successful food truck owners across the country begin opening complimentary restaurants as they master their trade

Present – Food Truck owners start looking for and requiring fully automated food truck POS systems to handle their on-the-go businesses and other mobile business concepts start to gain a foothold in the industry. Food trucks are evolving into larger enterprises and moving to restaurants, multiple food trucks, and some have even gone on to acquire venture capital funding and build multi-million dollar food brands.

What will happen next in the food truck industry is anyones guess. But looking toward the future of the food truck industry all signs point to increased growth in the industry. According to IBISWorld Industry reports over $1 billion in annual revenues can be expected in the coming years.

Video Tour: Sky’s Pizza Pie Trailer Container Conversion

When Sky’s Pizza Pie based out of Pensacola, Florida, wanted to establish a mobile sales channel they  turned to M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks to custom build a rolling pizza parlor.

Below is a video of how M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks executed the basic layout of the trailer according to the client’s concept before delivering the unit to the customer to make the finishing touches on their archetypal mobile pizza parlor.

About Sky’s Pizza Pie

Sky’s Pizza Pie is known for their appetizing New York Style Pizza made hot and fresh daily. Voted as the Best Pizza on the Coast for two straight years (2014 & 2015), this locally owned and operated pizza parlor was established by proprietor Sarah Noble back in 2010. Sky’s Pizza humble beginnings started as a small bakery and bagel business at 6604 N Davis Highway. They eventually evolved into Sky’s Pizza Pie three years after they first opened to the public. In 2015, they moved to a much larger location to correspond to their expanding business and accommodate their growing customer base.

Sky’s Pizza pride themselves of creating a pizza akin to the New York Style pizza this side of the Florida Panhandle. Their hand-tossed dough is made daily and uses only the finest and freshest ingredients bought locally. Just imagine these toppings list: Italian Sausage, Pepperoni, Ground Beef, Ham, Roma Tomato, Bacon, Green Pepper, Artichokes, Spinach, Black Olives, Fresh Garlic, Red Onion, Pineapple, Roasted Red Peppers, Ricotta, Anchovies, Mushroom, Capers, Salami, Capicola, Jalapeños, Banana Peppers, Feta, Green Olives, Pesto, and Meatballs.

Other than their famous New York Style Pizza, they also serve other delectable treats such as fried cheese sticks, garlic knots, wings, wraps and sub sandwiches, salads, calzones, and strombolis, as well as desserts. Their loyal customers consistently give them high ratings due to their large servings, great price, and exceptional customer service.

Sky’s Pizza Pie make use of stone ovens to make sure the crust is made perfect every single time. Their pizzas come in different sizes, from 16″, 18″, up to the enormous 24″ pizzas which can feed a large family or group. They offer amazing lunch specials seven days a week with great daily specials to fill up your craving tummy. You can drop by and order your pie or you can call for delivery at 477-4424 which comes with a delivery fee of $3.00 with a $15 minimum purchase. Sky’s Pizza Pie also offers catering services for birthday parties, business meetings, family gatherings, graduations, as well as luncheons.

Sky’s Pizza Pie Trailer Video Tour

In this project, M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks used a heavy duty container van with two 7,200 lb. axles. The unit has a small generator mounted at the front with two propane tanks enough to power the trailer upon its operation. Sky’s Pizza Pie intends to put an electronic awning at the top, which comes out automatically at the press of a button.

They used an open design featuring two large glass windows with screens on each side and a serving window at the middle pursuant to the customer’s specifications. There will also be a couple of colored LED lights at the top to illuminate Sky’s Pizza’s signage. Inside, there will be two large double deck pizza ovens and a couple of pizza prep counters and refrigeration for their ingredients.

For this build, Sky’s Pizza prefers to install the equipment themselves which were purchased through their supplier in Destin, Florida.

This build out is an example of what we believe makes M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks truly unique. Our primary goal is always to deliver on our customers goals. Whether they want a basic layout or a full build mobile food truck, each build is carried out with the utmost satisfaction of the client. In this case, Sky’s Pizza Pie wanted to install a one-of-a-kind pizza oven in a different location.

M&R’s business has been built on their client’s trust and confidence over the years. You’ll only get the best service when you consider M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks as your mobile food truck builder.

How to Create a Weekly Operations Schedule For Your Food Truck

Before you roll your food truck concept out into the world, it’s a smart idea to build out a tentative daily or weekly operations schedule. This is also referred to “daily service” by those in the industry. This operations schedule will give you a sense of the frequency you plan to work and the days you plan to take off for downtime.

One mistake that beginning mobile food vendors make is that they don’t build a plan of where and when they plan to vend. The other frequently made mistake is that they don’t build out enough prospective locations to vend at. These new business owners may have a local flea market in mind or an event they plan to serve at. But if the first location or two doesn’t work out they struggle to figure out what to do next.

When you start a food truck of your own, you’ll be doing a lot of experimenting with locations in the early days to figure out what spots and operation times are the most profitable for your business. It’s important to keep in mind that just because a certain event works well for a pizza truck, doesn’t mean that it will be a home run for a donut trailer. Consumers eat and drink different items at different times so it’s important to give yourself time to figure this stuff out in the first few months of the business.

If you plan to open a specialty coffee truck, like the one shown above, your highest profit hours will be at different times than a pizza truck.

Building out a daily operations plan doesn’t need to be complicated either. You can open up a Word Document and start planning out what you think a Sunday – Saturday would look like as a food truck operator. A cheap calendar and a pen will accomplish this task just as well. This is a great time to begin thinking about the times and locations your food truck would be most profitable to operate. For many food vendors, the question of when to operate will be straight forward. If you’re planning to serve meals like hamburgers and french fries for example, the most profitable operation hours will be lunch and dinner on Fridays and weekends. If you plan to focus more on beverages, like coffee for example, your most profitable hours will be in the morning.

As you begin to build out this operation plan, be honest with yourself if this is the type of hours you want to work. If you’re a morning person, operating a food unit that will generate most of it’s sales in the evening might not be the right choice. If you’re still in the planning and prep phase of your business this is the ideal opportunity to reflect on the what type of a lifestyle you want to have in addition setting business and revenue goals. The business should serve you as much as you serve and grow the business.

As an example, we’ve published a sample operations plan that you can use as a guide for developing your own operation schedule to show you just how easy this is to get started with. In the example below, we’ve created the plan for a coffee truck business, but you can edit the hours of operation and strategic selling locations to reflect your future business and geographic area.

Operations Plan 

Serving hours are built to capture both weekday mornings (high-demand time for coffee), as well as weekend evenings (high projected demand for pre-made dessert items). The specific locations we plan to vend are outlined below in the Strategic Selling Locations for Daily Operation

Weekly Operations Schedule

Serving Days: Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

Serving Times: Morning

7AM- 12PM 7AM- 12PM 7AM- 12PM 9AM- 2PM

Evening:  6PM- 10PM 6PM- 10PM

The desserts and baked goods being sold are already prepared and packaged. Since we want to focus primarily on serving coffees and teas, we will purchase food products from other vendors. The following schedule outlines when food preparation is done as well as the equipment maintenance and communication / business development with other clients. Although we will be handling regular business communication throughout the week, we want to carve out specific times to conduct this work as well to avoid overwhelm.

Food Prep, Equipment Maintenance, Business Development

Tuesday: 2 – 6 p.m.

Thursday: 2 – 6 p.m.

Friday: 2 – 6 p.m.

Strategic Selling Locations For Daily Operation

Selling locations will represent where the coffee truck parks most of the time. These locations are businesses who have given written permission (often times by email) to park its truck at their location. Businesses will do this for goodwill, symbiotic benefit, or sometimes revenue sharing opportunity. At most selling locations, our business will be the only mobile food vendor present. Strategic selling locations inside our city include:

The Temecula Library, Weekly Farmer’s Market at the Promenade Mall, Weekly Farmer’s Market in Old Town, Saturday flea market on Winchester, outside of the wineries, outside of local breweries.

Strategic selling locations nearby Riverside County include:

Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, Avocado Days in Fallbrook, numerous hot rod events around the area.

Gourmet Aviator

Built by M&R Specialty Trailers and Trucks.

Strategic Events

Strategic events are festivals, fairs, and public gatherings that include mobile food vendors. Strategic events very often must be booked very far in advance of the event. They represent opportunity for high volume of sales in a short period of time. In future years as we develop additional relationships, we expect to participate in more of these lucrative annually held events.

Strategic events in Riverside County include:

Ballon and Wine Festival, Summer Concert Series, Summer Movie Nights, Temecula Food Truck Rally, Pet Adoption Events, High School Homecoming, High School Sporting Events, Sport Team Fundraising events, Fall Festivals, Halloween Festivals, Christmas Tree selling locations.

We hope you use this post to develop your own operations plan. If you’re having trouble figuring out where and when to vend one of the best places to start looking is at the social media profile of other food truck vendors in your area. The most popular food trucks will regularly publish their hours of operation / where they plan to vend on social media websites like Twitter and Facebook. This makes it easy to find locations that allow mobile food vendors on a regular basis.

Finally, start to be more aware of where you see food trucks operating around the city. If on your next trip to Home Depot, you see a concession trailer take note of the location and add it to your list of potential vending locations. Simply being aware of your surroundings as your doing your regular routine around the city will help you identify other profitable vending locations.

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