HUGE demand for food trucks in Cockburn has prompted the local council to open up four “premium sites” across the city for the mobile eating stations.
The Rollinson Road car park in North Coogee, the CY O’Connor Beach car park, the stairs and the playground at Manning Park and the Bibra Lake adventure playground are the spots up for grabs.
Approved truck owners will be given exclusive use of the sites between October and June next year for about $1600.
That will increase to $2100 for the 2017-18 period.
To be considered by the council, food trucks must offer hot and cold drinks, snacks, a healthy food option, be completely self-contained and properly registered.
Cockburn’s planning and development services director Daniel Arndt said inquiries about food trucks and pop-up food stalls had increased with unemployed FIFO workers looking to enter the industry.
“Our response has always been in line with the City’s Local Law (for stall holders) not to support requests to park vehicles on busy dangerous roads, in coastal reserves where parking is at a premium, or in locations that would be unfair and unpopular with nearby cafes and restaurants,” he said.
“The intention is to ensure that users of beaches and key parks have access to hot and cold drinks including coffee, ice creams and snacks with some focus on healthy options.”
For more than five years the only food stallholder’s licence in the city has been held by Munster resident Maggie McCracken.
She has run Maggie’s Kitchen at Bibra Lake for the past nine years.
The council has already offered Ms McCracken her current site for 2016-17, with the business currently affected by construction of the adventure playground.
“It’s so quiet at the moment,” she said. “What (having the 2016-17 spot in Bibra Lake) does is gives me an opportunity.
“I’m looking forward to having it fully up and running.
“Hopefully we can make it bigger and better and people come down and support local business.”
The registration period for the four spots closed on Friday although the City said it may consider late submissions.
– Breaking out –
Sandra Bahbah is one of numerous Perth people to have traded in their old life for something new.
The Atwell resident spent the better part of a decade working in communications before finally taking a chance on her passion.
These days her food truck Meast, which offers a range of Middle Eastern food, is going gangbusters and can be found at different venues around Perth each week.
She said food trucks were taking off because they offer consumers something different.
“People love the idea of sitting in a park with their family and enjoying a cheaper meal than you would get at a restaurant,” she said.
“There’s a lovely vibe to it and most of the vendors are small businesses and make much of their food from scratch so you know you’re getting great quality.”
Despite the relaxed front offered to hungry customers, Ms Bahbah – who is also the president of the WA Mobile Food Vendors Association, said the finished product was always the result of a lot of hard work.
“People think the mobile food industry is easy money but it’s a very hard slog,” she said.
“You are constantly prepping for the week and it is a bit of a gamble if a location is going to be successful.
“You have to take chances and also work together with other vendors to create hubs where people will want to come eat.
“The biggest key is marketing, collaboration, research on locations and thinking about why your product is unique.
“If you can figure those things out then you’re well on your way.”
For information, search Meast on Facebook.