We have been insisting for several years now that food trucks are not a fad or trend, but are here to stay.
With lower startup costs and less fixed overhead, the barriers to entry are significantly lower for food trucks than for brick-and-mortar restaurants.
Food Truck Sales Going up
With the flexibility to adapt menus for the freshest available ingredients, and the ability to bring food directly to their customers, food trucks are now the fastest-growing dining industry in the US, with sales projected to quadruple by 2017.
Over the past five years, the food truck sector has grown an average 8.4 percent a year, according to industry analyst IBIS World in Los Angeles. Food truck revenue, which last year reached $650 million, is expected to quadruple to $2.7 billion by 2017, according to Emergent Research, a small-business research and consulting firm based in Lafayette, Calif.
That’s a lot of tacos, even if some are Korean, Japanese, or Turkish!
Not only are new chefs using food trucks to gain entry into the marketplace, but restaurant owners also see an opportunity to expand their customer base by launching their own trucks. The new El Paso Truck that we told you about earlier this week is a perfect example. They have one restaurant, and instead of opening a 2nd restaurant, they opened a food truck.
A 2012 poll found that 22 percent of “fast casual” and 13 percent of “quick service” and “family-dining operators” are considering adding a food truck, according to the National Restaurant Association, a Washington-based trade group. That includes places like (gasp!) Applebees.
No matter how you slice it, food trucks are a tough business. Just look at our recently unveiled Food Truck Graveyard.
While some vendors have moved on to open restaurants, just as many food trucks have closed down.
But that doesn’t seem to deter people from trying their hand at “the fastest growing dining industry in the US”.
Ah, the circle of life!