By Rick Restifo
This is the first in a series of articles that I will be writing for the new class of gourmet food truck entrepreneurs.
You have chosen the exciting world of catering trucks. This is a great business where you can earn an even better living. I hope to be able to provide tips and info to help your business thrive. Today we will talk about how to find the most profitable locations.
In Los Angeles, many new street food vendors follow other trucks. Often, 10 or 20 trucks may be grouped together in one area. This can work to your advantage, but it can also attract unwanted attention from law enforcement officials and the health department. Why not get creative and find your own spots? Below are some practical suggestions that would be ideal places to park your truck and get busy.
4. Office buildings
5. Industrial parks
8. Flea markets
9. Farmer markets
10. Art shows
11. Horse shows
12. Car races
13. County fairs
The best way to find great locations is to do your homework first. Spend time looking and meeting people. Ask questions and observe other trucks.
When I started catering, I spent three to four hours per day in my car hunting locations. I got my share of rejection, but eventually I found a private school that wanted my service. I made $4000 per week at that school, and held the contract for five years.
GOOD LUCK and welcome to the industry.
I’ll be back next week to tell you why it’s a good idea to sell fries, pasta salad and potato salad on a food truck.
Rick Restifo has more than 45 years in the mobile food industry. He is a consultant for LA RAZA foods, Los Angeles’ largest catering truck commissary. He also owns Rick’s Fine Foods Inc, and is the author of How To Run a Great and Successful Catering Truck in 2012. He can be reached at rick@LaRazafoods.com.