Conflicts between food trucks and brick and mortar restaurants are beginning to escalate in Washington DC, similar to the same clashes occurring throughout the country between restaurants and mobile vendors. Most of the lobbying in DC has come from big, established restaurants, trying to root out Washington’s new mobile food trend.
Currently, there are an estimated 80 food trucks within the city. The Fojol Brothers is the first food truck to come to Washington DC, serving their inaugural meal on the day of President Obama’s inauguration. Altogether, food trucks account for about 400 jobs in Washington DC, a number that may be in jeopardy by the more established restaurant industry.
Some call it a typical David and Goliath story, with the food truck owners working to start up their own business only to receive objections from well grounded, politically connected restaurants. The same trend is occurring throughout the country, with food trucks being zoned and forced to park away from restaurants. In Monrovia, California, food trucks are banned from the old town district entirely.
Food trucks in Washington have been safe thus far, but a legal battle is playing out between closed doors in which restaurants are maneuvering in favor of their interests. For food truck patrons, the new appetite they’ve acquired for food trucks may soon be at risk.
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