Learning About Startups

Don't Forget These Items, New Food Truck And Trailer Owners

Food trucks and concession trailers have become a lucrative way for people to make money in the food industry without worrying about finding restaurant space and paying rent. However, for those starting out, a few surprises lay in wait. These are items that every truck and trailer owner has to account for, but they aren't obvious to people on the outside looking in. Once you get these squared away, though, you shouldn't have to worry about them again except to replace as necessary.

Secure Storage Space

Your truck or trailer is on wheels for a reason. You're likely going to have to move around from place to place rather than sitting in one location for the entire time you have your food business. That means the inside of the truck will experience the shaking that comes with being on the road and turning. Ensure you have secure storage space for your equipment and supplies. Cabinets should latch securely, dishes should have storage spaces that prevent them from falling, and food items that you might have for sale on the side -- things like chips and other snacks -- should have a place to stay so they don't fall on the floor during your travels.

Fresh Water Supplies

These trucks and trailers need water so that employees can cook (in full food trucks) and wash their hands (in non-kitchen trailers and all other vehicles). That means a running water supply is necessary, and there must be enough water to last for the time you'll be working. You'll need to look for tanks that can hold enough water for your needs, and you'll need to arrange for refills and drainage.

Oil Disposal

If you're getting a truck or trailer where you'll be frying foods, how will you dispose of the oil? How will you secure it so it doesn't splash out if you hit bumps in the road? You'll need a cooking oil disposal system as well.

Seats for Workers

Tiny concession trailers that you tow behind a pickup may have room for just you to stand in, but full food trucks usually have an entire crew working behind the scenes -- and those workers need to get to each location as well. Your truck has to have enough seats for them to sit in (do not make them stand during travel!). You can't rely on an outside vehicle because if that driver doesn't show up, you've just stranded your employees.

It would be a good idea to set a time to look through catalogs and wander through showrooms with the express purpose of just looking first. You'll see items that you hadn't thought about before; research these to find out if they are legally necessary or if they're items you'd need anyway on a practical level. Then arrange for a consultation with companies like CS Techs Inc to see what items would work in the space you'll have. Running a food truck or concession trailer can be rewarding, but it does take proper planning.