In today's world a different generation of street-food lovers is queuing up at food carts and food trucks like never seen before. But what they don't know is that food trucks are not new to the streets. Just as with many other trends, these are the latest version of part of a longstanding American and global culture. And yet the street-food industry hasn't ever enjoyed such notoriety or publicity.
Based on statistics from IBISWorld, a research firm in Los Angeles, the street-food business, including nonmerchandized carts and mobile food trucks, is a billion-dollar industry that has experienced an 8.4 percent increase over the five years between 2007 and 2012. It is a very entrepreneurial approach, with 78 percent of operators employing four or fewer employees. The actual number of these entities is difficult to compile, as the entire mobile food industry is made of food carts, kiosks, and food trucks, which can be found in trains, bus stations, airports, malls resorts, conference centers, stadiums, and other locations.
Experts in the food industry claim that food-truck businesses are on the increase, largely because of a slow-moving economy. More and more people are looking for relatively cheaper breakfasts and lunches. In addition, today's employees are often in a hurry, with more working time than lunch hours. Such contributing factors make the food truck concept more appealing than ever.