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Food Trucks (2010s)

A food truck is essentially a truck that sells food. (Ice cream trucks are essentially food trucks.) Food trucks range from trucks that sell frozen or pre-packaged foods to a full restaurant on wheels. Most of them provide a specific meal or style of food.

Food trucks are often found catering at public events, such as carnivals, construction sites, fairs, festivals, sporting events and the like or at regular places of work or study, such as campuses, office complexes, movie sets, farmers markets, military bases, etc. Food trucks have become a popular staple in many major North American cities.

The history of food trucks start in Texas after the American Civil War. Texas cattlemen had to get their beef out to places that didn’t necessarily have railroads yet, so they created the chuckwagon. By the 1890s, night lunch wagons regularly catered to the graveyard shift workers of New York City. In the late 1950s, the chuckwagon morphed into more of a mobile canteen that were authorized by the Army to operate on bases. In fact, food trucks have always been around, only now they are fully operational trucks able to move from city to city instead of a cart set up by an office complex. On TV, you can catch series devoted to food trucks on the Food Network (The Great Food Truck Race and Food Truck Face-off) or the Cooking Channel (Eat St.).

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