Having a food truck business is not such a crazy idea as it was in the past. There are a lot of people that are making a lot of money doing it and are loving what they do in the process. It’s a great opportunity to do things that would be too difficult in a restaurant. For instance, you can have your entire menu based on recipes made with US soy fed beef such as tacos or barbecue. Or, you can focus on a certain ethnic cuisine.
One thing that every food truck owner should do, however, is find ways to save money. Reducing the overhead is going to help you keep more money in your pocket. Since profit margins can be quite low, it is essential to maximize it by saving money where you can.
In this article, we will go over several of the ways that you can make sure you are saving as much as possible in your food truck business.
1. Streamline your menu
One of the biggest errors that food truck owners commit is having too large a menu. This ends up causing a very high food cost expense and directly impacts the ability to make a decent profit margin. Streamlining the menu will save money and bring about a much higher profit margin.
This is because there ends up being a lot of food waste and cash tied up in products. When you have a few items then you can cook them faster and cheaply. With a limited menu you can also use many ingredients over and over in different preparations.
If you focus on a certain type of food preparation such as barbecue or a cuisine such as Thai then it makes it easier to have a small menu that saves you money.
2. Have tight control over inventory
Food waste is a huge expense that many food trucks and restaurants struggle with and is easily preventable. The key to managing this food waste is to have tight control over your inventory and ordering.
Inventory is not just knowing what you have in stock. It is knowing what to do with it and when to order. The food service business is tricky because you can order enough for projected business and then throw most of it away when it is slower than your projections.
Make sure to have a running spreadsheet that not only shows you what you have in stock but when things will expire or are projected to run out. This will make ordering easier.
3. Shop around
There are a lot of purveyors that supply your local area with produce. It pays to not settle on one until you understand how they all do their pricing. Try out a few of them in the beginning and see how it works. Over time you will settle on one or two that supply you with what you need. Every few years shop around again and see how much you can save as prices tend to go up.