Foodservice Equipment Reports

Food Trucks Gaining Traction, Says NRA

The fumes of controversy surrounding food trucks are clearing, and consumers are showing increasing interest in mobile foodservice. New research by the National Restaurant Association confirms that 59% of consumers would be likely to visit a food truck if their favorite restaurant offered one; that’s up from 47% a year ago.

Nearly one-fifth of the 1,004 adult Americans surveyed in August saw a food truck in their community this summer, and 28% of those who did made a foodservice purchase from it.

“Convenience is a major driver in restaurant growth, and food trucks are certainly a convenient option by essentially bringing the restaurant to the consumer,” said Hudson Riehle, sr. v.p.-Research and Knowledge Group for the NRA. “Our research shows that in just one year, the number of consumers who say they would be likely to visit a food truck has increased significantly. We also found that food trucks have a more noticeable presence in communities in the West and Northeast than in other parts of the United States.”

According to the survey, nearly 30% of consumers living in the West and a quarter of those in the Northeast saw a food truck parked in the community this summer. About 15% of those surveyed in the South saw a truck, while only 9% of Midwesterners did.

As to the future, more than two-thirds of consumers (age 18-44 years) said they would be likely to visit a food truck if one is offered by their favorite restaurant; only 38% of those 65 or older expressed interest.

“Mobile foodservice can be a good way to extend an existing restaurant brand beyond the four walls of the establishment,” Riehle said.

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