Tags Posts tagged with "Organization"


As a small business owner, you know how important it is to keep track of every little detail relating to your mobile food business. When it comes to owning a food truck, this can be a time consuming task. Not only do you have customer receipts, credit card slips and inventory to manage, but you also have more supplies than many other businesses, as well as employee and health department records along with compliance documents to track. Over time, this can add up to a mound of paperwork.

paperless office
Image from Office Space.

One way to simplify things is to go paperless whenever possible. Not only will this cut down on your truck and office storage needs, but it will also make it easier to sort documents and access them when you need them. In the end, this makes your life as a food truck owner much simpler.

Getting Started

One of the most challenging things about going paperless in the food truck industry, especially if you have been in operation for some time, is simply getting started. Transferring hard copies to a digital format can be time consuming. To make things a bit easier, take a day out of your schedule to tackle the job. Scan all of your important papers and store them digitally on your computer. Once you have them all scanned, organize them as best as you can. Consider using an online storage system like Dropbox. You will have access to these files wherever you have an Internet connection and will have a protected set of your files.

Keep Moving Forward With Technology

Once you have digitized your existing paperwork, it’s time to simplify the process for future uploads. There are some things you will not be able to digitize completely, but many systems can be paperless such as accepting credit card payments through an online payment system such as Square.

If you monitor your online reputation, you can use Google Alerts to track what people are saying about your food truck. Consider looking for vendors that offer online ordering and digital receipts. When you get the receipt for your order, simply store it in your online system and never have to deal with a paper copy at all.

There are even online programs that allow you to make a paperless shift schedule for your employees. These programs offer features like requests for time off, shift trades and even mass messaging to your entire staff.

Going paperless will eventually help you save a little bit of money. While it may be a bit of a challenge at the beginning, but once you have carefully organized digital files for your food truck’s history, the rewards will be well worth the initial effort.

tip of the dayWe all know the life of a food truck owner is one that is filled with repetitive daily tasks, but do you miss some of those tasks that you plan too far in advance? Create a tickler file for your projects. A tickler file traditionally contains 43 divisions – one for each of the 31 days of a month (labeled 1 – 31), and 12 for the months of the year. (Never mind that some months have fewer days!)

You take your projects (such as deep cleaning the hood filters in your truck’s kitchen) and put a written reminder about them in the file according to when they are due. For the current month, a project goes into the number files for whatever day it is due. When a project is due in other months, it goes in one of the month files.

Each day, you pull out the contents of the folder marked for that day’s date and work on the stuff in it.  Then once the next month rolls around, you transfer that month’s reminders into the days, and repeat.

Central Penn MFACENTRAL PA – Today mobile food vendors from Central Pennsylvania are announcing the formation of a new organization, the Central Pennsylvania Mobile Food Association. Representing 22 mobile food vendors from York, Adams, Dauphin, Cumberland, Lancaster, Lebanon and Berks Counties, the immediate goal of the association is to increase the dialogue between York City Council, York City restaurants and the mobile food vendors of Central Pennsylvania, following the tabling of Article 332 “Mobile Food Carts” of the York City Codified Ordinances.

The original Ordinance proposed to increase the number of cart licenses from one to six and expand the food-cart district to several blocks surrounding Continental Square in the City of York. Opposition to this proposal had been raised by several restaurant owners in York. As additional dialogue and research had been requested on this legislation, Council moved to refer this Bill back to committee for further discussion at a future work session.

Mobile food vendors pose no threat to the restaurants of York or any other city in Pennsylvania. In fact, food trucks improve local business scenes–including restaurants, as they increase foot traffic in communities, keep the streets safe and activate less-populated areas. In New York’s Lower East Side and Chicago’s Maxwell Street Market, food trucks were banned and nearby restaurants took a hit. Food trucks draw people out of their offices and homes and into the community, opening their eyes to all of the meal options their neighborhood has to offer. Mobile food vendors and restaurants serve two different customers and are not competing for the same dollar.

“Right now, cities across the U.S. are considering how to regulate food trucks,” said Jordan Pfautz, owner of Lancaster-based Baron Von Schwein. “With progressive legislation, York has the opportunity to plant their flag and be on the forefront of the food truck revolution instead of driving it out of town.”

“York’s City Council can serve as an example of government done right by passing a law that protects the public’s health and safety–as a good government should, rather than protecting established businesses from competition. We are looking forward to working with York’s City Council and York City restaurant owners to craft effective legislation for all.”

Find out more about the CPA-MFA at facebook.com/CentralPennMFA.

Food truck events provide a great opportunity to introduce your community to the mobile food industry as well as bring in funds for charitable organizations.  However, organizing an food truck event also costs money to produce, as well as resources to manage all the details.   To help offset these costs, you may want to consider soliciting event sponsors. There are two major forms of sponsorship event organizers can use.

Food Truck Event Aerial-Pic
Image from twinpeaksfoodtrucks.com

Business Sponsorship

Local businesses often look for opportunities to give-back to their community.  The great thing about these event sponsorships is that not only do companies receive tax benefits (as their sponsorship fee is considered a donation), but they also receive exposure through presence at the event.

This allows them to reach out to new potential customers, and receive free publicity through media coverage.  Sponsoring an event also gives employers an opportunity to engage employees and business partners in a social setting outside of the workplace, while encouraging teamwork and goodwill.

Media Sponsorship

Another integral part of creating the right kind of exposure for your food truck event is through the use of media. This use of media as a medium for event dissemination is called media sponsorship. The challenge of setting up and publicizing your event are what organizers always face. With limited budgets, the reality of buying airtime can exhaust your resources.

It is through media sponsorship that your event gains the opportunity to get aired through media forms. This kind of support allows for stretching your marketing budget, print placement and more commercial airing coverage. Most often, media sponsorship is applied through the following – radio, print, television, outdoor advertising and now social media/Internet advertising.

How to Land Food Truck Event Sponsors

Remember that each form of sponsorship has its own goals – the media and local businesses will use sponsorship for their own gain. They both realize that their participation in event earns them a good image/reputation in the community. This is a win/win situation. While the sponsor is helping you, they also recognize that the more successful your event is, the more publicity they will receive as your sponsor.

The advantages for you will be numerous. Media sponsorship helps save money for your business since advertising will be taken care of through radio, television and/or print. This will also give your event more credibility since it is sponsored with a public organization. People will come to associate one with the other…another reason to choose your sponsor carefully.

Continue to the next page to get 25 tips on what to offer your food truck event sponsors…

tip of the dayA common complaint people have about being part of a mobile food organization is that they are often forced to suffer through worthless meetings. Yet, meetings are an important way to get work done and help spread news about the local market. Instead of wasting people’s time, follow these three steps to make your food truck meeting valuable to your members attending:

  • Keep it small. Only invite people who need to attend and who can directly help achieve the meeting’s objectives.
  • Prepare and circulate an agenda. Without an agenda, you’ll no doubt waste time agreeing on what you are there to do and how you’ll do it.
  • Be mindful of time. Always underestimate how much a group meeting can accomplish. Keep the meeting as short as possible while still achieving its objectives. If you go late, don’t hold people captive, schedule a follow up meeting.

BIRMINGHAM, AL – Food truck operators around Birmingham have circled the wagons, and recently announced they have formed a coalition to promote the city’s growing street food industry and guard against too much government regulation.

birmingham alabama

The group, which calls itself the Greater Birmingham Street Food Coalition, began as a Facebook movement last year, when the Birmingham City Council first considered an ordinance that would enforce when and where food trucks and push carts may do business in the city. According to the group’s website:

The Greater Birmingham Street Food Coalition is a group of culinary entrepreneurs who sell high-quality, diverse and exciting cuisines from vehicles, push-carts and other portable vending facilities. The Coalition seeks to promote and protect our industry as a viable and beneficial business model and to assist members in with the legal, regulatory, and public relations issues that arise in connection with the operation of members’ businesses. Specifically we hope to:

  • Provide a single point of contact for local government officials, owners of “bricks and mortar” restaurants, and members of the public to foster and maintain positive relations with all concerned.
  • Work cooperatively with municipalities and governmental bureaucracies to review codes, ordinances, procedures and enforcement so that they better address the realities of this new industry and not try to apply out-dated and inapplicable rules to this novel and dynamic business model.
  • Assist members with legal and regulatory compliance issues and concerns.
  • Provide assistance to members to assist them in providing positive additions to this new culinary movement.
  • Create a system of addressing issues that may arise from our presence and develop equitable solutions to resolve any problems.
  • Provide contact information for members of the community who wish to avail themselves of the services our members.

The group also plans to promote and raise money for the mobile food industry by hosting food-truck festivals similar to the Trucks By the Tracks event last year at Railroad Park.


California Mobile Food Association (CalMFA) Logo
Sacramento, CA – Nearly twenty Sacramento area mobile food vendors have joined together to form the California Mobile Food Association (CalMFA). It is a non-profit organization, aimed at creating a supportive ecosystem for local mobile food businesses, driving awareness for local communities/charities & representing the voice of local mobile food operators within Sacramento’s business community.

“Our goal is to work in cooperation with the communities that we live and serve in,” says Chris Jarosz, President.CalMFA is comprised of nearly 20 different mobile food vendors, all from the Sacramento area and surrounding areas. The association is comprised of mostly food trucks, but has grown to incorporate other “out of the box” mobile concepts including a trailer-based wood fired pizza oven, a tricycle based ice cream brand & even a mobile boutique.

The association has created a “community atmosphere” amongst the mobile vendors, empowering the businesses to educate each other and work as a team. CalMFA is active in our local communities, having planned and executed numerous fundraising events for various non-profits, schools and other local organizations.

“We help the organizations to attract people to enjoy a fun, family oriented event with a selection of great food from a variety of mobile vendors. A portion of our sales is then given back to the organization. It’s a win-win for everyone,” says Jarosz.

CalMFA also serves as a means by which local business owners can collectively foster healthy relationships with local government and fellow businesses.

“CalMFA has worked closely with local city officials, the California Restaurant Association, and local restaurateurs to form more mutually beneficial regulations for the City of Sacramento, “ says Nicki Smith, Secretary.

Lastly, CalMFA is currently planning small and large-scale events, all over Sacramento and its surrounding areas. The organization is highly active on social media, and for event and promotional purposes, operates under the brand- FoodMob.

The organization is steadily growing, as more vendors join from all over California. The current membership of the California Mobile Food Association includes:

·        Wicked ‘Wich
·        Fuzion Eatz
·        Local Kine Shave Ice
·        Heavenly Dog
·        El Matador
·        The Pizza Company
·        Miz Shirley Marie’s
·        Steak, Rattle, and Roll
·        Kombucha Kulture
·        Squeeze Inn Truck
·        Popcycle Creamery
·        Addison’s Originals
·        OMG Burger
·        California Love Truck
·        Mama Kim Cook’s
·        Gypsy Mobile Boutique*
·        Papa Dale’s Diner
·        Off the Mapp

*denotes non-food vendor



Memphis Food Trucks

MEMPHIS, TN – For a city renowned for southern cuisine, it’s a pretty safe bet that one thing Memphis isn’t famous for is movable feasting.

But that may be about to change.

A group of local food service professionals have joined together to form the Memphis Food Truckers Alliance, which aims to connect mobile food providers and serve as a support and marketing network for members.

The group will hold its first meeting at 6 p.m. on Monday. Locations for the gathering are still being considered.

“We want to organize all operators of food trucks in Memphis and help them communicate with each other and with the public,” said Taylor Berger, one of the group’s founders. “There are only about 45 licensed food trucks in Shelby county, but we think the potential is there to really increase the presence of food trucks in our community.”

Berger is co-owner of the YoLo Frozen Yogurt & Gelato chain of 11 shops and has a food truck he uses to sell his products. He’ll participate in a Downtown food truckers rodeo from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday around Court Square and another at the end of June at Shelby Farms.

He believes MFTA, which is being formed as a nonprofit organization, can be used as a vehicle for food truckers to share best practices and boost the profile of pop-up food markets in the Mid-South.

“Memphis can benefit from this by having companies connect with food trucks to offer a variety of food on their premises, for special days or even every day, by having food trucks in parks to offer products to folks who might not want to bring food with them and also to have mobile markets in neighborhoods that are underserved and need revitalizing,” Berger said. “The food truckers can benefit by having a centralized website that shows where all the food trucks are at any given time and by having a unified group that will allow us to respond to specific city and county rules and regulations regarding our industry.”

Erik Proveaux, owner and chef at Fuel Cafe in Midtown, will participate in the food truck rodeo and is excited about the alliance.

“I think having a critical mass is important because it strengthens the voice of the food truckers and it raises our profile in the community,” Proveaux said. “This whole thing is a fun way to offer a variety of food to lots of customers.”

Find the entire article by James Dowd at Memphis Commercial Appeal  <here>

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