Tallahassee, Florida – You’ve probably seen new food trucks around town. They are becoming one of the hottest new businesses for food service entrepreneurs not only in Florida, but across the country.
More than 2,000 mobile food vendors are currently licensed with the state of Florida. They’re required to get a license from the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
The department reports food trucks are the fastest growing type of food service license issued by the state. The Tampa Bay area has one of the largest concentrations of these mobile restaurants in Florida with nearly 500.
The owners of Kinfolks Award Winning BBQ set up their food truckoutside the Tallahassee headquarters of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation on Friday. The agency hosted a mobile food vendor fair to recognize the businesses as a vital part of Florida’s economy.
Ken Lawson, the leader of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, says inspectors are meeting the challenge of monitoring the rapidly growing number of food trucks.
“We have ways to find out if there is a new food truck in the area and we go to them and make sure they’re licensed. If they’re not licensed, we try to bring them toward compliance. But if they’re unwilling to be compliant, we’ll shut them down.”
Lawson says you should look for a food truck’s license when you order a meal.
“Look for a certificate. Make sure they have a certificate from my department showing they are licensed and if they have any questions about a food truck, then go to our website. They can check that food truck’s last inspection to see the quality of the inspection and see if there are any violations so they can feel comfortable about the service they’re going to receive at that food truck.”
Mobile food vendors undergo the same inspections as restaurants. You can examine a food truck’s inspection history by entering its license number at www.myfloridalicense.com.