It should be no surprise, but food truck owners across the country have shown their support for the mobile food vendors of Washington DC who are facing tough new restrictions.

food truck solidarity

A coalition of food truck industry groups from the United States is taking up spatulas with their D.C. counterparts over the District government’s proposed regulations. In a letter addressed to the D.C. Council, the food truck associations are voicing their opposition to proposed rules that would require mobile vendors to position themselves in spots with at least 10 feet of unobstructed sidewalk, as well as a lottery system that would decide which trucks get the plum parking spots.

The following food truck organizations have voiced their opposition to D.C.’s new regulations:

  • Central Ohio Food Truck Association
  • Illinois Food Truck Association
  • Maryland Food Truck Association
  • Minnesota Food Truck Association
  • New Orleans Food Truck Coalition
  • New York City Food Truck Association
  • Philadelphia Mobile Food Association
  • Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association

Below is the letter drafted and signed by the participating food truck associations:

Dear D.C. City Council:

We are food truck owners from across the United States. We are hard-working Chefs and entrepreneurs and our food trucks have provided us with a pathway to building better lives for our families, our employees, and our communities.

This is why we are standing with our brothers and sisters in Washington, DC, to oppose the District’s recently proposed food-truck regulations.  These regulations represent some of the worst food truck laws in the county and, if passed, would transform the District overnight from a leader in mobile vending to one of the worst food-truck cities in the nation.

These proposed regulations contain a number of arbitrary and counter-productive provisions, including one that would restrict food trucks where they are in highest demand to a limited number of spaces assigned by lottery. Food trucks would be prohibited from serving customers within 500 feet of lottery-assigned spaces and on streets where there is less than 10 feet of unobstructed sidewalk.  For those dozens of food trucks that don’t win the lottery, the choice will be to either shut down for an entire month because of the limited number of viable places left to vend or leave the District of Columbia for more friendly jurisdictions.Leaving your livelihood up to the outcome of a lottery is a gamble that no small business owner should be forced to make.  And no other city in the country requires 10 feet of unobstructed sidewalk in order for a food truck to vend.

We join the Food Truck Association of Metropolitan Washington in supporting  targeted laws that address legitimate public health and safety concerns. But Mayor Gray’s proposal seeks to impose a one-size-fits-all approach that severely restricts where food trucks can operate and threatens the very existence of D.C.’s food-truck industry. Council members, please reject the Mayor’s proposed regulations and send them back to the drawing board.

Central Ohio Food Truck Association, Illinois Food Truck Association, Maryland Food Truck Association, Minnesota Food Truck Association, New Orleans Food Truck Coalition, New York City Food Truck Association, Philadelphia Mobile Food Association, and the Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association