ARTS + ENTERTAINMENT

Food truck winters: struggling to stay in business

Oct 26, 2023, 8:00 PM

Kiwi Tui tends the coals under the meat at Foniti’z Fix food truck during Polynesian Days Utah at...

Kiwi Tui tends the coals under the meat at Foniti’z Fix food truck during Polynesian Days Utah at Electric Park at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi on Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023. (Megan Nielsen, Deseret News)

(Megan Nielsen, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Being a local food truck owner in Utah is far different than in Florida or California.

With Utah winter seasons sending people indoors, keeping a food truck going can be difficult.

“They do the best they can to keep their employees on board, but they’re just at best covering costs,” said Eliot Steimle, General Manager of the Food Truck League.

Steimle said that unique success stories like Cupbop and Waffle Love are the exception. They have corporate events and brick-and-mortar locations to carry them through the winter.

Others often have to let employees go and barely break even, especially after one of the heaviest winters we’ve seen. The majority have to plan for the more difficult season, still setting up shop through cold temperatures like at the Gallivan Center.

“Those are trucks that are trying to make it through the winter and being able to come out and support them,” Steimle said. “If I had an ask, that would be it, to come out and get those guys.”

Gallivan is one “winter staple” that has food trucks on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Grab a coat and visit from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Food Truck League posts pop-ups regularly on their social media pages.

Another way to help your favorite local food truck achieve a Cupbop or Waffle Love level of success is to consider them for catering throughout the winter season. 

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Food truck winters: struggling to stay in business