HomeTo TryGuide To Starting A Food Truck Business in India 

Guide To Starting A Food Truck Business in India 


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Do you want to start a food truck business in India? Then you are at the right place. Continue reading because we’ve included everything you need to know about your food truck business plan in India that will inspire you and take you one step forward to making it a success.

Food truck business ideas have gained popularity in recent years in India, thanks to popular TV channels such as TLC, which features food trucks across the United States. Let’s see the steps to be followed.

The first step is to chalk out a business plan for a food truck. It will be your ideal road map to fully operationalizing your food truck business idea. We understand that at this point you might have a lot of questions and doubts in your mind and that is why it is essential to develop a detailed business plan for your food truck. 

Although starting a food business in India may appear daunting, the following points will walk you through the entire process of opening a food truck business in India:

  • Pick a theme and cuisine. Remember, that is going to be your differentiator and the reason for your food truck’s popularity.
  • Do some research on the catchment area in which you want to park your food truck.
  • Choosing an appropriate food truck or commercial vehicle.
  • Obtain the necessary kitchen equipment and raw materials for a food truck.
  • Apply for the required licenses and permits to start a food truck business in India.
  • Look for the manpower needed to keep the food truck running smoothly.
  • Install point-of-sale software for your food truck.
  • Choose a uniform for your food truck employees.
  • Promote your company appropriately.
  • Determine the total investment needed to launch a food truck business in India.
  • Complete the funding sources.
  • Consider other items required to keep your food truck business in India running smoothly.

Now, let’s delve deeper so you can thoroughly understand how to implement the above points in the most effective ways to boost your food truck business in India.

Things To Keep In Mind While Starting A Food Truck Business

  1. Pick a Theme and a Cuisine for Your Food Truck

Starting a food truck business, research is the key to starting this entrepreneurial journey. It is important to determine what type of cuisine your food truck wants to offer and to what community. Also, you need to know your competition, so find out how many food trucks already offer the kind of food that you plan on selling.  

  1. Choose a Right Commercial Vehicle

The very first step to take is to select the appropriate truck or commercial vehicle. Based on the menu, for instance, Italian and Continental, you will need a commercial vehicle that is at least 18 feet long, with a new one costing around Rs 7-8 lakhs. Trucks from Tata, Mahindra & Mahindra, and Ashok Leyland are available on the market. To save money, you can start with an old truck that is half the price of a new one. 

When purchasing an old commercial vehicle or truck, make sure it has a valid fitness certificate, registration, road tax receipt, and insurance. It should also be no older than five years old, as various state governments and environmental organizations are considering banning 10-year-old commercial vehicles in different cities due to pollution issues. 

  1. Location of Food Truck

Select a place where a similar type of food is not available nearby, has a steady flow of traffic to attract large crowds, and has establishments with young professionals and students nearby. Furthermore, truck parking should be done so that it does not impede commuters while remaining visible to the public. 

Moreover, purchasing a light commercial vehicle rather than a large, heavy commercial one is preferable because large trucks are not permitted in certain cities, including Delhi, before 9:00 p.m. 

  1. Source Raw Materials and Kitchen Equipment

The total cost of kitchen equipment is approximately Rs 3 lakhs, which includes the items such as microwaves, working tables, burners, juicer mixers, freezers, generators, refrigerators, grillers, steamers, exhaust equipment, or an inverter with large batteries. It is suggested to buy new equipment as you will be relieved of the daily maintenance cost. 

However, if you choose your equipment carefully and determine which can be purchased and used, you can save a lot of money that can be used for other essential activities. It is recommended to stock up on fewer raw materials for the first few weeks, to have a fresh supply and to analyze the sales pattern before having more.

  1. Obtain all the Licenses and Permits

As we know, there are no clear-cut laws in India about food truck/restaurant business plans, so a specific set of documents required is not present uniformly. However, obtaining the following business licenses for your food truck in India is critical to avoid discrepancies. 

The following are the licenses:

  • Fire Safety Certificate
  • Shop and Establishment License
  • NOC from RTO
  • NOC from Municipal Corporation
  • FSSAI Mobile Vendor’s License
  • Kitchen Insurance

The licensing work will cost you around Rs 50K. There are numerous consultancies that can assist you in obtaining licensing and other permits.

  1. The Workforce required for your Food Truck

In the food truck format, two chefs and one helper are enough to oversee the entire food truck operations. You can set up a delivery model for the truck by hiring two delivery boys or partnering with third-party logistics companies that charge between Rs 40-50 per delivery. 

  1. Food Truck Point-of-Sale Software

A robust POS protects your data and provides detailed sales and inventory information. A powerful POS can make or break your company in today’s cutthroat business world. Many restaurants, including QSRs and other food businesses, use customer data to get repeat orders and ask for customer feedback.

  1. Uniforms for your Employees

The staff uniform gives the restaurant an overall brand feel, which helps you gain more trust among your customers. A standard collar t-shirt will cost around Rs 120, and because you only have five employees in this format, two chef coats (2 each) will cost around Rs 300, while the rest of the employees can wear t-shirts and caps. On the whole, it will cost you arround20-30K 

  1. Leverage Marketing strategies

Food trucks, unlike QSR, require fewer menu pamphlets for distribution because their primary business is footfall rather than delivery. Some brochures, banners, and billboards need to be placed in the nearby catchment area to create the initial buzz, and this will cost you around Rs 10K. 

However, creating an offline buzz is no longer sufficient in the new digital age. As we know their primary business is footfall rather than delivery, food trucks, unlike QSR, require fewer menu pamphlets for distribution. 

  1. Total cost of business

The total cost of setting up a food truck in India is around 10 Lakhs. It varies mainly according to the type of vehicle you opt for and the kitchen equipment. 

  1. Find Funding for Your Company

With a business plan in place, it is time to focus on the funding sources available for your food truck business. There are numerous options available:

  • Loans from family and friends
  • Sponsors from the community.
  • Business loans are provided by microfinance institutions/banks.
  • Crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, GoFundMe, and Indiegogo.
  • Business partner/co-founder capable of bringing in additional funding.
  • Personal savings – Over 50% of food trucks are financed through personal savings.
  • Credit cards that have been pre-approved can be used to meet working capital requirements
  • Financing from a Venture Capital Fund if loan funding falls short of the required amount.

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