Thursday, May 17, 2012

Drifting away

I've written a couple of times about food trucks, mostly about Vancouver's attempts to build up their street food scene. They seem to have it sorted out: there's now more than 100 food carts in Van-city.

Here in Toronto, we're not so lucky. There's a number of folks trying to make a go of it, but Toronto being Toronto, they are governed by complex bylaws and a hidebound bureaucracy. By contrast, my hometown of Edmonton seems to have a nice little scene sprouting up. It's nice to see a city that's not exactly known for being on the cutting edge of food trends pull one over on the Centre of the Universe.Which is why I was pretty annoyed to read this, as it highlights some of the attitudes and arguments that are holding street food back here. Colby Cosh at Maclean's pretty much nails my feelings on this story here. The only thing I would add is that I really don't see how a food truck is real competition for bricks and mortar restos. The two models offer up completely different experiences. And, where there is overlap, such as in the grab-and-go lunch market, it should come down to quality. As far as I'm concerned, the state's role should be limited to providing and enforcing health and safety guidelines that everyone must follow, and not concern itself with matters of competition.

N.B.: regular food posting to resume shortly before stopping abruptly again for my summer vacation.

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