BROCKTON — Have you always had a passion for food and entrepreneurship? But you weren’t sure how to combine those two ideas? Well, maybe a mobile food truck could be your next business venture.
We’ve gathered information from City Hall and local entrepreneurs to create an easy breakdown of helpful things to know when you are getting your business going.
Before busting your checkbook, as you plan a successful business as an entrepreneur, you must consider the needs of the community you are catering to and develop a unique concept and food menu that’s captivating to the consumer.
Whether that is a fusion of two cultures, which is popular in the Brockton area, or your take on a traditional menu, you must make it your own.
Once you have the design concept, menu, and vehicle, it’s time to bring everything to code.
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What do you need to start a food truck in Brockton?
Now, you may wonder what the first steps of are starting a food truck business? Well, there’s no right or wrong way to begin the process. Some may start by establishing their business name, what state to file in, logo, and entity before buying and designing a truck, like Justine Ramos from Cheesy Chicks, a macaroni and cheese-based food truck in Abington.
“It’s critical to do your research. There are a lot of taco food trucks out there. When I started my business last year, there weren’t any mac and cheese food trucks, so I knew it would be perfect. You really have to understand what your community is missing and how your business can accommodate,” Ramos said.
Ramos started her food truck journey by researching the area and looking at what her competitors are selling and what they have to offer. She had to decide whether to pull a trailer or find a truck.
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For Ramos, finding a food truck with an oven was super important to her business, and she suggests looking into the best options for whatever type of food you’re selling.
“I researched my food truck and bought one from Delaware. I wanted my truck to have an oven because I bake mac and cheese. You can find a truck with everything you want, or you would have to gut it and make it your own, but it is costly,” Ramos said.
Finding the perfect food truck wasn’t the only difficult thing on this entrepreneur’s bucket list.
“The hardest part about this journey for me was finding a commissary kitchen that worked well with my schedule and catered to my business needs. It took me about four months to find a kitchen,” Ramos said.
The biggest tip Ramos has to offer is to “be patient.”
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Especially during the process of passing inspection and bringing your truck up to the health department’s standards in Brockton.
This process took Ramos almost six months to complete.
“It was a very lengthy process, so I advise everyone to take their time and not rush it, which can lead to mistakes,” Ramos said.
Food truck permit requirements
In the city of Brockton, you must have a valid food service permit from the Board of Health and a current mobile food vendor permit to operate.
The city of Brockton expects the food truck owner to go through and read the mobile food truck guidelines, expectations and requirements.
You must pass the health inspection, pay for and obtain a mobile food vendor license and food service permit, provide copies of the health inspection report, menu, commissary kitchen contract, food protection manager certificate, allergen awareness certificate, registration for the vehicle, and a copy of the driver’s driving license.
The fire department must approve propane or open flame if used or applicable. The owner must also provide a layout of the mobile food truck, a completed application, workers compensation affidavits, a hawkers and peddlers license, a business certificate, a complete truck inspection checklist, event information and other paperwork.
Here’s where to get help
Although we summarized the process in a few short paragraphs, the process is lengthy and will take food truck owners several weeks or months to complete everything on the list. The mobile food truck guidelines, expectations, and requirements from the city are over 26 steps long to ensure your success.
Starting a new business is no walk in the park, but the city of Brockton is there to help with every step of the way. If you have any questions about the application process and obtaining permits, please call 508-894-1480 or visit in person at 60 Crescent St., Brockton.