How To Start A Food Truck Business: What You Need To Know

A Collection of Resources Related to Starting  A Food Truck Business

Have you always wanted to start your own business?

Perhaps you’re a budding Masterchef but you don’t have the money to open a restaurant… Perhaps you already have a part-time or full-time job but you’re looking to diversify your income streams.

And perhaps you’ve never even thought about launching a food truck business before but you’ve been offered a van at a price that’s too good to pass up.

There are a lot of benefits to starting a food truck business, and there aren’t many downsides. People will always need to eat, so as long as your food is good there will always be a market, and it’s a job that can take you all around the country.

Still, it’s important to be realistic about your new business, and that’s where this post comes in. The first thing you need to do is to weigh the pros and cons:

The Pros

  • The freedom of being your own boss
  • Ability to attend and serve food at events
  • If one location doesn’t pan out, you can easily move to a different one
  • You get to create your own cuisine
  • It has a low startup cost compared to starting a restaurant
  • You can run this as a part-time or seasonal business
  • More In the resources below

The Cons

  • Competitive marketplace
  • Fuel costs and vehicle upkeep can be expensive
  • If the vehicle breaks down, the business can’t operate
  • Long hours in cramped quarters
  • Business can be affected by weather/seasonality
  • More In the resources below

What you need to know

Now that we’ve covered the pros and cons, you’re ready to learn the basics.


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Food Saftey laws

Every territory, both nationally and internationally, has food safety laws. They’re designed to make sure that anyone who’s working with food is able to maintain good hygiene practices.

By making sure that you comply with local food safety, you avoid fines and other punishments. Better still, you make sure that the food that you serve is safe for your customers to eat.

Contamination risks

Contamination occurs when food or ingredients come in contact with something that they’re not supposed to. As an extreme example, if you bleach your surfaces and then immediately prepare ingredients, you could end up serving food that’s contaminated with bleach. But contaminating dishes with nuts, milk and other allergens can also trigger allergic reactions.

Dietary requirements

Every one of us is different, and we all have different dietary requirements. Some people are gluten-free and can’t eat food with wheat in it. Some are vegetarian, vegan, or on a low-sugar diet. Some religions prevent followers from eating certain types of animal products.

You need to clearly communicate what ingredients are in your food so that customers with specific dietary requirements don’t end up eating something that they shouldn’t.

Startup and Running costs

You’ll need funds to purchase and customize your van or purchase an existing one. Your main expense will depend on the truck and kitchen setup, which can be under $20,000 to well over $100,000, depending on the condition and make and model of the truck.

You’ll also need to spend money on sales and marketing so that people know your food business exists in the first place.

As for day-to-day running costs, there’s actually not too much to worry about. Your main expenses will be insurance, fuel costs, food/ingredient costs, employee wages, and the upkeep of your vehicle.

Vehicle types

Not all food vans are created equally. There are thousands of different vans on the market, and some of them are better suited to helping people move than they are to cooking up a storm.

When you start a food truck business, the easiest way to get started is usually to buy an existing food truck and to customize it to suit your brand. The alternative is to start from scratch, buying a regular van and converting it to meet your needs.

Market research

There’s no point in starting a business if you’re not going to have any customers. That’s why you should spend some time doing market research, to figure out your target market and, just as importantly, what they like to eat.

Once you know what your target market likes to eat, spend some time developing recipes and having taster sessions. That way, you can make sure that people will like your food once they try it – and it can help to give you important pointers and ideas that you might not have had access to elsewhere.

Still, want more information?

Not to worry! We’ve sifted through the web to bring together the best guides and information that we can find to create this ultimate list of resources.

By including the work of various authors in this post, you’ll get a full overview of this industry that can help you determine if this is the right type of business for you.

Starting Your Food Truck Business

Starting a business has similar steps. For example; define the type of company to form, creating a business plan, funding your business, choosing a location. etc.

Rather than repeating the same steps in this post, I have an article with all the details. In addition, I have included important points for you to consider before you start. See The Essential Steps To Start a Business for all the details you’ll need.