Running a food truck can be a very enjoyable way to make a living. You get to prepare delicious, creative food and then watch as people enjoy it. If you want to go above and beyond, consider making your food truck operations as "green" and eco-friendly as possible. Not only is this good for the planet, but it will also attract a good number of customers who share your earth-friendly values and want to support businesses dedicated to preserving the planet. Here are four ways to make your food truck business more eco-friendly.
Contract with an eco-friendly grease removal company.
What happens to the oil from your fryers and the grease from your grill? If you're just throwing these away and having an ordinary waste removal company pick them up, then it is time to make a change. There are sustainable grease removal companies like Tierra Environmental & Industrial Services who will come collect your grease and then convert it into methane, which can be used to generate power. Methane is a clean-burning gas, so not only are you ensuring the grease is recycled, but you're also helping produce a more earth-friendly power source than the coal that is burned to generate much of the power in the U.S.
When you have the grease trap in your commissary restaurant cleaned, make sure you have the eco-friendly grease removal company do that, too. The grease will get recycled, and you won't have to make an extra call to the plumber.
Switch to green paper products and plates.
One nice thing about running a food truck rather than a sit-down restaurant is that you don't have any plates and silverware to wash. Everything is disposable. However, if you're using styrofoam, you are missing out on a chance to help the planet. Look for compostable paper plates, napkins, and even silverware. Set out a separate bin for customers to dispose of these items after they use them. You can then either compost the waste yourself, or drop if off at a local composting facility. Many nurseries and some small local farmers may be interested in accepting your compost as they can let it break down and then use it directly on their fields, saving them money on fertilizer and soil amendments.
Let guests fill their reusable drink containers.
Instead of giving every customer a cup, encourage them to bring their own drink containers when they dine at your food truck. Fill these beverage containers up with soda, coffee, or whatever beverages you serve. Just charge a flat rate on any size container to keep things simple. Your profit margin should be so large on beverages like soda and coffee that it really won't matter if you're giving some guests 20 ounces and others 16 ounces. Plus, the idea that they can have you fill any size container for the same price will encourage customers to bring their own containers rather than getting a disposable cup from you!
Buy from local farms.
Look down your ingredient list, and determine which foods you might be able to buy from local producers rather than from warehouse-type vendors. Visit local farmers markets and chat with some of the farmers. See which ones would be willing to partner with your business and supply you with local ingredients.
The benefits of buying local foods are many. Less fuel is used to transport the food because it does not have to travel so far. You can selectively purchase from farmers who use earth-friendly growing practices and fewer pesticides. Plus, you are supporting another local business, and your customers will like seeing that you're dedicated to the local economy.