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SARTELL, MN – Food trucks can begin to flavor the streets of Sartell.

Earlier this month, the City Council approved an ordinance that allows the horse-powered kitchens to operate within Sartell. Food trucks already are allowed to operate in St. Cloud and have gained popularity downtown and at the Summertime by George! event.

Sartell council members voted to change the ordinance after vendors asked to operate within the city.

In the past, Sartell allowed food trucks that were not stationary for any amount of time and sold prepackaged food. The new ordinance allows self-contained food trucks or trailers to operate within the city, but the truck or trailer should be movable without a lot of disassembling.

Sartell’s move to allow the mobile kitchens is a good one.

The ordinance could have revenue ramifications on restaurants, but it’s not the government’s duty to protect a restaurant’s profit from going elsewhere. Food trucks in the city have a 50-foot limit on how close they can park to a restaurant. And in a metro area stacked with restaurants, food trucks certainly are not the only competition.

They are subject to the same whim of the marketplace as other businesses. Sure, location is a key factor in a business’ success and food trucks can move throughout cities, but vendors need separate licenses to operate in each city.

And restaurants can always operate their own food trucks.

Find the entire article at sctimes.com <here>

Finnegans reverse food truck

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Head to downtown Minneapolis or other Twin Cities locations during the summer, and you’re sure to find a food truck offering something you’re craving. Now the Minneapolis-based beer company Finnegans, which donates 100 percent of its profits to charity, is taking the food truck phenomenon and spinning it on its head.

Its new “reverse food truck” doesn’t make food. It takes food — for charity.

“We’ve never heard of anything like this before,” said Amy Lee, Finnegans’ marketing coordinator.

The truck sets up at locations around the Twin Cities to collect nonperishable food items and monetary donations via cash or credit cards. All donations go back to Finnegans’ community fund, which channels the food to local food shelves and use the monetary donations to buy fresh produce from local farms for the food shelves.

The idea was born in December during a meeting between Finnegans and one of the companies it works with on its charitable projects, the Minneapolis advertising agency Martin Williams. Within hours after the meeting, Finnegans CEO Jacquie Berglund had secured a truck. Three months later, over St. Patrick’s Day weekend, it was launched.

“It has taken a village to get this truck running,” Berglund said. Local businesses helped transform the 1980s vehicle into a flashy, noticeably bright green truck emblazoned with the Finnegans name.

While the reverse food truck has not yet been to many events, the plan is for it to park at summer events and festivals. Supporters can follow where the truck will be located on social media and at Finnegans’ website, Berglund said.

Find the entire article at startribune.com <here>

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