What You Will Need When Starting Your Own Food Truck Business
Starting a food truck business will take a lot of effort, and not just hard physical work, but also lots of planning. You will have to decide whereabouts you are going to set up your food truck and how you will go about encouraging new customers to try your food. You will also need to consider how to go about gaining the all-important permits and licenses that will make your mobile food establishment legal.
Although these items are totally necessary, they are not the only parts of the process that you will be looking forward to getting involved with.
#1 Finding a Suitable Vehicle from Which to Run Your Mobile Food Establishment
Of course, you will be able to purchase food trucks already fitted out and apart from needing a good clean, they will be totally ready for business. This is all well and good if you have the money and are looking to hit the road and start cooking. However, if you are thinking of going the more bespoke way then purchasing a truck that requires not only conversion but also kitting out and revamping is properly closer to what you have in mind.
Purchasing a vehicle such as this will require full dedication, imagination, and probably deep pockets, as it will not be cheap to complete. However, the results can be astounding and eye-catching, which is what you will be after when trying to stand out from the crowd and create interest in passers-by.
However, when you are designing your interior, you must ensure any materials you use, for instance, for your countertops, comply with legislative requirements to gain the licenses and permits that you will need to function legally and safely as a mobile food establishment.
#2 Installing Plenty of Clever Storage
When you are designing your interior, it will have to be attractive and functional. With this in mind, install as much clever storage as you can to keep serving dishes, cooking accessories, and dried ingredients, such as bulk onions (dried, minced, or powdered), close to hand but out of sight of the customer. This will mean that your key ingredients are kept close enough to work without losing additional time, and yet, will also keep your working space as clean, tidy, and professional as possible.
Of course, you can always have your prize crockery or ‘glassware’ out on display if it pleases you, but you will have to ensure that it is secured enough to keep it safe while you are on the move.
#3 Choosing Your Preferred Kitchen Equipment
In addition to all the clever storage, you are going to need a power source and some basic equipment, as well as other gadgets, which will, of course, vary depending on the culinary delights that you will be making and serving to your paying customers. Most standard food trucks that serve hot food will have a grill or hot plate of some description to cook the food on and a refrigerator to keep ingredients fresh. However, you do not have to limit yourself to this.
Installing freezers will help you keep ice cream at a desired temperature if you are thinking of offering them to your customers. Most customers are happy with a rustic service when it comes to ice cream, but they may want the additional extra, such as a chocolate flake, fudge stick, sauces, or sprinkles.
However, you could enhance your customer experience by entering the lucrative coffee market and offering coffee via a barista coffee machine, deliciously thick milkshakes from a milkshake maker, or creamy-dreamy hot chocolate made with real chocolate flakes.
#4 Keep Customers Comfortable with Folding Seating and Tables
Although you will find that most customers will be happy to take their food and drink away with them to consume elsewhere, you may find that ours would like to linger. Providing them with somewhere to sit (away from your queue) with a small table could be enough to keep them with your food truck a little bit longer, maybe just long enough to purchase another item, such as ice cream, for instance.
Of course, room in your truck will be at a premium, so investing in some easy clean, wipeable, collapsible, or folding furniture could be ideal for the purpose in hand. You would not need to go mad with these, and just two or three sets would probably do for a start. The addition of a tablecloth and a small handful of flowers (even artificial) can set a welcoming vision and make a space more enticing. Undoubtedly, in some circumstances, the tablecloths may need to be weighted down or in bad weather not erected at all.
#5 Additional Ways of Making Money from Your Food Truck
If you are finding that you cannot secure your perfect pitch or require additional ways to make money from your food truck, there is always the option of renting your services out to private functions. These functions can range from weddings to parties. They can be novel for the partygoers to experience and can ultimately bring you new customers that actively seek out your food truck or recommend you to others as a different kind of enhancement to their celebrations.
To Wrap It All Up
Making your food truck to your own design and equipping it with the items that you will need for the service you are wanting to provide can be exciting. However, it is important that you do not forget about the licenses and permits that you will need to operate as a food provider. Reading through these important documents before you start work on your vehicle is a must, that way you can make sure that you comply fully with the rules and requirements set out therein.
Once you have started on this route, you may find that you like the idea of there being a string of mobile food establishments and decide to make more money by setting up a franchise for others to buy into – therefore, carrying your brand far and wide, across the states and beyond.