Tags Posts tagged with "Canada"


Kamloops downtown

KAMLOOPS, CANADA – Kamloops’ food trucks will be able to return to Gaglardi Square for another summer.

But, as city council passed a series of bylaw tweaks at a public hearing on Tuesday night, it appears no one is really satisfied with this year’s regulations.

The latest changes to the city’s food-truck bylaw will reduce the number of spots available to park downtown from three to one — though two of last year’s spots were stalls on different sides of the Fifth Avenue and Victoria Street intersection.

Zoning changes will allow trucks to park at Hillside Stadium, with proper permits, and in new industrial zones. Trucks can also open slightly earlier, at 9 a.m. on weekdays and at 7 a.m. on weekends.

Speaking to council, Mikey Wheeler-Johnson, owner of pasta truck Eats Amore, wasn’t particularly enthused about the changes.

He said food-truck operators had hoped to see a second spot added to the city’s on-street program on the North Shore or at a city facility like the Tournament Capital Centre, but said it’s a discussion city staff only seem to be entertaining now, when most trucks have already begun making plans to attend private events and functions that may clash with the city program.

“I think this is things that should have been worked on over the winter and we could have hit the ground running,” Wheeler-Johnson said.

On the other side of the issue, Kamloops Central Business Improvement Association general manager Gay Pooler said restaurant owners downtown believe the trucks hurt their business when they parked in the core last summer. She said restaurant owners also believe it’s unfair that food trucks avoid paying high city taxes.

“We agree that food trucks do have a place in the city, but we are worried about the taxation imbalance to our bricks-and-mortar locations,” Pooler said, suggesting the city raise its daily food truck parking fee downtown from $15 to $50.

Find the entire article at kamloopsthisweek.com [here]

menu food truck toronto

TORONTO, CANADA – Summer is the season for food trucks, but many vendors say despite the new regulations it’s still a challenge doing business in the city.

“That’s the hardest part. There is nowhere to park cause there are restaurants all over Toronto,” said Bryan Siu-Chong who is co-founder of MeNU Food Truck.

On Tuesday afternoon, MeNU Food Truck was parked along University, just outside Toronto General Hospital. When Global News was there, a security guard approached Siu-Chong at the truck to tell them they were not supposed to be there – apparently, because there was a food court in the hospital, they were violating the 50-metre rule.

Global News checked with City Hall’s Municipal Licensing and Standards department. We learned that MeNU was in the right place and did not have to move.

Carleton Grant is the Director of Policy and Strategic Support for the department. He said the rule is only for restaurants that are facing a street, not food courts inside a building.

“Now we need to educate the businesses, the parking lots , the hospitals the security guards, what the rules are,” said Grant.
When the city introduced the permit system it allowed for 125 permits at a cost of $5000 each. To date, only 14 permits have been picked up by gourmet food trucks.

Zane Caplansky owns a food truck and a restaurant, Caplansky’s Delicatessen. He says he opted not to get a permit. “It is the most expensive mobile vending permit in the world, and it’s useless.” Said Caplansky.

Find the entire article at globalnews.ca <here>

farm city coop vancouver

VANCOUVER, CANADA – Vancouver may be replete with food trucks offering every delicacy conceivable on our bustling city streets, but one new venture hopes to give busy Vancouverites the chance to eat healthy, fresh, and local – at home.

This week saw the roll-out of the FarmCity Fresh Cart, which offers a veritable cornucopia of fruit and vegetables, as well as eggs, local honey, preserves, sodas made from locally farmed fruit, and an assortment of snacks and salads on the streets of downtown Vancouver and New Westminster.

This micro farmers’ market is the result of a partnership between the good people at Re-Up BBQ (who’s food cart at the Vancouver Art Gallery was taken out of commission by a bus, and has been sorely missed ever since) and FarmCity Co-op, a collective of small scale urban farmers across Metro Vancouver.

“FarmCity Fresh Cart is an innovative, grassroots means of nurturing and growing a network that links urban farms with local restaurants and consumers,” said Re-Up BBQ co-partner Lindsay Kaisaris in a press release this week. “We’re excited for the collaboration that the Fresh Cart brings. We’re able to pool crucial resources to help generate profits and exposure for local farmers and small businesses that may not have had the same opportunity on their own.”

Find the entire article at wevancouver.com <here>

Calgary food trucks

Calgary’s mobile food fleet has shown that food trucks are no longer deserving of the title “roach coaches”.

CALGARY, ALBERTA – Calgary’s expanding food truck flotilla is passing more than just than the taste test, according to results from this year’s health and safety inspections.

No major issues or high-risk violations were found as most of the mobile eateries were put under the microscope earlier this month. Minor maintenance and equipment-related infractions were cited, but nothing that warranted charges.

Chief Licence Inspector Kent Pallister noted there was some media scrutiny of health violations in 2012, but contended the results are exceedingly positive.

“Now in 2014, I believe our food truck operators are better educated in the health regulations and experienced in what is required so we are now seeing better results upon inspection,” Pallister said.

The City of Calgary is nearing 50 of the four-wheeled food wagons, with 46 permits added out, three pending approval and one new application. There was a 43-truck cap under the two-year pilot program that wrapped up last fall.

Find the entire article at metronews.ca <here>

street food ottawa
Photo Credit: Kath Ferguson/eatst.foodnetwork.ca

OTTAWA, ONTARIO – Some of Ottawa’s food trucks are returning to the streets for the summer but some owners and operators of the trucks have mixed reviews about how the city is running the food truck program.

Steven Dupras is the co-owner of the Red Roaster truck in the Glebe and was part of the 17 food trucks and carts added to the streets of Ottawa last year. He said it is frustrating how the city assigns the trucks a spot for the summer and are not allowed to move.

“But why does it have wheels then,” questioned Dupras.

The city’s street food vending program established street spots for vendors to sell meals between 11a.m. and 5:30p.m. Each vendor has a designated permit for a particular spot that must be at least at 46 metres from another food provider such as a restaurant.

Tarek Hassan, owner of the Gungfu Bao cart on Elgin Street at Slater Street, said that the truck operators need to learn how each location works to make the most money.

“You access a very specific market when you’re in that location and at a certain time of day during the week,” said the steamed-bun maker.

Hassan usually sticks around his location until 3 p.m. for late lunch lines. He hopes to find another location for the weekends or a new way to exploit his current spot on Saturdays and Sundays.

Food trucks voicing concerns

Food truck operators have now gathered and created an association, the Capital Street Food Association, to better voice their concerns to city officials.

The purpose is to have a single voice discuss problems and challenges with the city as well as with event organizers, according to Dupras.

Find the entire article at cbc.ca <here>

kitchener Food Trucks

KITCHNER, ONTARIO – The controversy over new rules for food truck operators in Kitchener is heating up as a city committee considers them next week.

While council won’t decide on the proposed set of rules until May, at least one food truck operator says she’s finding the new rules hard to stomach.

At issue is a new a licensing fee of almost $2,000, plus a $150 event fee for every time trucks would set up for special Thursday night events downtown.

Previously, city staff had proposed food trucks be set up between 200 to 400 metres from existing restaurants. In the new proposed rules, that limit would shrink to 30 metres.

Andrea Kim and her husband Christopher started selling Korean food from their truck, West of Seoul, in September of 2013. She says the new rules would affect her bottom line and ultimately, the ability to operate her business in Kitchener.

“The fee is not only unreasonable in comparison to the fees of neighbouring cities, but it’s unreasonable just because of the type of access we’re being given,” Kim said.

She and her husband have already bought a license to operate in Hamilton, which only cost them about $300 by comparison.

Proposed new food truck rules

Food trucks will still be licensed as special events in Kitchener under modified rules proposed by city staff.  Council had previously considered rules at the end of February, until a motion by Coun. Berry Vrbanovic sent staff back to the drawing board.

Here’s what is included in the new rules being voted on Tuesday:

  • Food trucks will be able to operate in ?McLennan Park, Huron Natural Area, Budd Park and Southwest Optimist Park, as well as Huron Business Park.
  • Trucks must be set back at least 30 metres from businesses and 90 metres from schools, unless permission is given by the business or school to decrease that distance.
  • Trucks are prohibited downtown unless they’re part of special events and festivals, Monday lunch hours at city hall, Thursdays between 4:00 -10:00 p.m. at pre-determined locations, or one-off promotional events between businesses and the food trucks.
  • Trucks would also be permitted downtown as part of a pilot program in the Civic District which would see between one to three trucks operate one evening a week.
  • A food truck license to allow operators to set up on public and private property would cost $1,947, plus $150 per event fee. A license to operate on private property only would cost $1,051.

Find the entire article at cbc.ca <here>

food-trucks toronto

TORONTO, CANADA – More food trucks will likely soon be on Toronto’s streets following a council vote Thursday night.

In a 34-3 decision, councillors voted in favour of new regulations aimed at loosing restrictions for street food vendors in the city.

Under the new rules, food trucks will be allowed to set up in a pay-and-display parking spot for up to three hours. Trucks can only operate for three hours in a 24-hour period, however, and only two trucks can operate on the same block at the same time.

Additionally, trucks must keep at least 50 metres away from a licensed restaurant that is open and operating. The condition does not apply when a food truck is parked on private property or in one of 58 licensed parking lots, however.

While the new program is not perfect, it’s an improvement, according to one local vendor.

“It’s better than it was,” food truck operator Zane Caplansky said of the new program. “It’s progress, it’s a step forward, and I think it’s something that we can look at as baby steps, but not certainly the victory we wanted.”

The city will issue 125 permits this year to vendors, including the 27 food trucks already operating.

Find the entire article at cp24.com <here>

toronto food trucks on street

TORONTO, CANADA – Council has yet to swallow any changes to the city’s street food rules.

Despite spending several hours debating the licensing committee’s proposal to slice and dice the red tape around Toronto’s food truck industry, councillors failed to wrap up the debate Wednesday.

The debate is expected to continue Thursday but it isn’t clear whether council will be able to digest the changes or end up chewing them up and spitting them out.

Food truck advocates Councillors Josh Colle and Mary-Margaret McMahon predicted it is going to be a close vote.

“It seems we just move at a snail’s pace sometimes,” Colle said after council finished Tuesday night without finishing the food truck debate.

A fight is expected on the council floor around how far away from an existing restaurant a food truck must be before it can serve food. City staff have recommended a 50 metre rule. If approved food trucks would only be able to operate in street parking spots that are at least that far away from the nearest restaurant.

Mayor Rob Ford said Wednesday he was in favour of reducing the restrictions.

“The less red tape the better,” Ford said.

Find the entire article at torontosun.com <here>

rob ford toronto mayorTORONTO, CANADA – Supporters of Toronto’s food truck movement have a new — if unexpected — ally at city hall: Mayor Rob Ford.

The mayor was asked about the new street food bylaw recommendations from city staff.

Ford said he supports loosening the notoriously restrictive rules and that the latest proposal doesn’t go far enough.

At present, food trucks aren’t allowed to sell on city streets. They can sell in private parking lots, but only for 10 minutes at a time. The new regulations, which will go to council next month, would allow trucks to set up anywhere with “pay and display” street parking provided venders are 50 metres away from a bricks and mortar restaurant.

But there’s a catch.

City staff has also said that Business Improvement Areas — which are largely made up of restaurant owners — and local councillors can request that food trucks be banned from their neighbourhoods.

Ford said that restriction could jeopardize the point of the review, which was to make it easier for food truck drivers to operate.

Find the entire article at thestar.com <here>

toronto food trucksTORONTO, CANADA – Toronto food truck owners are unhappy with the long-awaited liberalization proposal unveiled by city bureaucrats on Monday, saying it gives an unfair near-veto to established restaurateurs who want to keep them away.

The proposal is intended to launch a street food renaissance. It would allow the trucks to sell food from all “pay-and-display” parking spots on city roads — for the first time — as long as they stay 50 meters or more from a restaurant and 30 meters or more from school property.

That is a major victory for a food truck movement that has long struggled under a repressive regulatory regime. But the proposal would also permit councilors or local Business Improvement Areas — made up of bricks-and-mortar establishments — to ask the city to ban the trucks from a particular area.

If the city agreed, the truck owner would have to file an appeal. A final decision would be made by the local community council, made up of councilors from the general area.

BIAs would have even more power over applications to operate trucks from streets without “pay-and-display” spots. The proposed bylaw says the city “shall” reject the applications if the BIA objects. Those battles, too, would have to be settled at community council.

Caplansky’s Deli owner Zane Caplansky, who also operates a food truck, said he will take legal action against the city if the “ridiculous” BIA provision is approved.

“That provision will gut the entire initiative,” Caplansky said.

“The BIAs are caving to the restaurants who don’t want the food trucks there. Therefore, what BIA is going to let us set up where we need to set up, which is where the people are?” said Scott Fraser, co-owner of the Hogtown Smoke barbecue truck.

“What they’re going to do is give us a little hole-in-the-wall parking lot, a mile and a half away from the nearest office building.”

Find the entire article at thestar.com <here>

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