Food truck business has been flourishing in India and has been gaining popularity as a concept. Previously the main focus was in CBD(Central Business District) areas of the metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi, and NCR.
Here we will take you through everything you need to know about starting a food truck in India.
Let’s start with these things:
The most important part of the business is a truck. Initially, you can start with a second-hand food truck and the vehicle running would be a bare minimum. At a later stage, you may invest in a new one. It might cost approximately 4-5 lakhs when buying a food truck.
2.Equipment and Raw Material
Next most important investment required is in essential kitchen equipment though it is a one-time investment for your truck. Essential types of equipment may include oven or stove, utensils, cookware, cutlery and few appliances like fridge, chimney, etc. When all the equipment put collectively would require an investment of around INR 2 lakhs. You will require an inventory stock of ingredients or raw materials to prepare the meals. That might cost you around INR 20-30K initially.
4.Staff Recruitment and Marketing
You will require to pick a few employees to manage and handle the daily operations of your food business. Fortunately, in India, expenses of using a support staff are not that huge. You can consider keeping aside around 13-15K per month per person.
Like any other store, sales will grow only if you are advertising and promoting your food business the proper and right way. Marketing would involve both offline and online publicity and can require you to spend a lot of money. You should keep at least 20k aside for the marketing of your business. Over and above your everyday operations, you should consider establishing a few tie-ups and cater to events, corporate festivals and more, such activities act as a marketing strategy.
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5.Licenses and Permissions
Like any other restaurant, even food truck requires all the valid consents and licenses as per the government norms. Nowadays illegal food stalls or food truck running with permits and licenses are have been banned or eradicated from various cities. Licenses that are compulsory to run a food truck are as follows:
Any food business including food trucks with gross revenue of more than Rs.12 lakh in India needs to have the FSSAI license.
NOC from Fire Authority
As food trucks deal with a lot of gas appliances, having a NOC that is the No Objection Certificate from the Chief Fire Officer is obligatory.
Permission letter from the local municipal body
When you will zero in on a location for your business premises, you would need to get a written document, stamped by the local municipal body to start setting up.
A vehicle license as per the RTO of commercial vehicles is just as you will be operating out of a commercial vehicle, a license for the same must be issued by the RTO of commercial vehicles.
Your food truck will manage well only if the location is good. So while selecting the location Keep the following factors in mind while deciding to find spaces for food truck parking
A truck would require a sizable volume of open space or parking spaces for rent. Also, you need to assure that you are authorized to park a vehicle in a precise area. You could check up with the confined municipal authorities about this.
You should determine an area which is often visited by people. Select areas that might be outside or close to popular parks, movie halls, and universities. The is a tendency of the food business to flourish in such areas. For E.g These days food truck business is flourishing Central Business Districts, especially during Lunch hours.
8.Health and Hygiene
Food trucks usually work in very small areas. Owners must be very careful of kitchen hygiene, air pollution levels, and food waste management. Checklist related to health and hygiene are as follows:
- Perform the use of chimneys to check air pollution.
- Keep a check on the food waste twice a day and maintain a clean cooking area.
- Assure that your team or staff members keep good sanitation.
- Put a few dustbins near the food truck.
A restaurant is as great as how it clicks with people. People love connecting with unique stories. Try to connect your brand with a unique story. Consider the following points to build a strong brand.
- Finalize a target audience
- Do competitor research:
- Finalize a name
- Finalize a logo and a theme
10.Adopt Latest Technological Trends
These days digital marketing has been playing a very crucial role in the success of any business. The reason being is people are now becoming more techno-savvy and are using apps, websites to order food or research any food brand or restaurant before visiting. People order as per the reviews, coupons codes, discounts, and offers.
So good marketing and promotions will determine the success of your business. Following this in mind, we will point out some ways you could promote your food truck, both online and offline.
- Have your own website and app.
- Tie up with online food ordering aggregators like Swiggy and Zomato. Here’s the complete guide to getting you started.
- Develop a powerful Social Media presence.
- Run online advertisements.