Austin food trucks shown to be responsible

December 27, 2013 by  

Those whose guilty pleasure is grabbing a bit to eat from a food truck should relax, as there may not be too much to feel bad about after all.

Although food trucks in Austin fail inspections at a higher rate than their brick-n-mortar counterparts (13% compared to 2%) they nevertheless enjoy a healthy safety record. In the past three years, officials have not confirmed any food related illnesses that traced back to mobile food vendors, and trucks are put through rigorous and regular safety inspections.

One reason for so many failed inspections may be due to the unique challenges faced by food truck vendors. Power, water, and refrigeration are issues that crop up the most. According to Texas law, food trucks must be inspected to ensure proper food preparation and storage, as well as basic sanitation. It also makes provisions allowing local officials to enforce their own stricter regulations.

The city of Austin has, since 2010, added its own rules. Among the Austin specific rules are use of a central commissary for food preparation, state sales tax permit proof, an itinerary of their routes, and proof that employees have permission to use the bathroom at businesses that lease space to vendors.

Mobile food vendors will often order flyer printing to state where and when a vendor is open, as well as that particular truck’s menu. In that way, those who cannot get enough food on the go will know where to be and when.