Brisbane seeking ‘mobile food facility’ operators

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 5th March 2013

The Brisbane City Council has called for tenders for ‘mobile food facilities’ at several locations around Queensland’s capital city.

The self-contained food  and beverage trucks, which will operate through the Brisbane Infrastructure Department, will be located in 11 different parks and reserves around the city, including in the suburbs of Chermside, Manly, Calamvale, South Brisbane and Kangaroo Point.

“Creating this opportunity for food and beverage vendors adds yet another great reason to visit our Council parks,” said Brisbane’s Lord Mayor Graham Quirk.

“Depending on the success of the trial program, food and beverage vendors may also be used for popular parks programs such as food festivals, movies in the park, seasonal events and events such as music, moveable furniture or chess boards,” he said.

Tenders for the Brisbane food trucks must be submitted electronically to the Brisbane City Council. Submissions will close at 12 noon, Queensland Standard Time, on Wednesday 27 March 2013.

The first Brisbane food truck, The Bun Mobile, hit the streets in the State’s capital in March 2012.

In October last year, the Queensland State Government teamed up with UK chef Jamie Oliver’s Ministry of Food and sent a food truck on a tour of the State to promote healthy eating and using fresh ingredients in the kitchen.

Food Trucks in other States

In New South Wales, Sydney City Council started a year-long trial of food trucks, after the council asked residents what they would like to see more of after hours in the city. One overwhelming response, said the Council, was “more food options late at night”.

Sydney’s first food truck was launched in April 2012, and the Council went on to develop mobile phone apps to give users real-time information on where the trucks are, how to get there and links to each truck’s menus and social media feeds.

“Food trucks have taken off in major cities around the world, where they are a social media sensation, with cult followings developing for the best trucks via Twitter and Facebook and people chasing all over town to reach their favourite,” Suzie Matthews, Sydney City’s Late Night Economy Manager said.

In Victoria, Melbourne’s food trucks have had a little more rocky start. Last year, trucks that were operating in the city’s Docklands area were not reissued with trading permits for the area after nearby restaurants complained that competition from the food trucks was affecting their businesses.

Melbourne’s food trucks continue to operate in other parts of the city.

In South Australia, Adelaide City Council are also trialling a mobile food vendors project, through its program Splash Adelaide. The program is designed to bring more life and culture into the city’s streets. The Council recently extended the trial period for the current mobile food vendors to 30 April 2013.

Food trucks globally

Food trucks have taken off in other cities around the world, including in Los Angeles in the US and in London. Research by US market research company IBISWorld found that the street vendor industry grew by 8.4 per cent between 2007 and 2012, with an estimated annual revenue of $1 billion.

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, street food of some description is eaten by almost 2.5 billion people globally each day.

Brisbane seeking 'mobile food facility' operators