Let a Hundred Food Trucks Blossom, a Hundred Schools of Cuisine Contend

Food trucks are an increasingly vital part of the urban scene across the United States, yet many suffer from excessive local regulation. In Virginia Beach, food trucks are prohibited from operating on public or even private property unless there is a permitted event.

But Virginia Beach City Council is considering an ordinance that would allow food truck operators to set up in certain areas like side streets and corporate business parks, according to WVEC TV. The ordinance still would restrict trucks from operating on Pacific and Atlantic Avenues in the beach-front resort district, but it would represent a significant step forward.

Food trucks add vibrancy to the local food scene. They allow culinary entrepreneurs an inexpensive way to test new food concepts. Take the “A Bite of Maine” food truck rated as a Top 3 food truck in Virginia Beach by ThreeBestRated.com. The truck serves delicacies ranging from Lobster Seafood Bisque to Maine Whoopie Pies — not exactly common menu fare in Virginia Beach.

Bro’s Fish Tacos menu items include Good Cod Almighty and Baja Black Sheep Tacos. Seoul 757 Tacos dishes out such hybridized fare as Bibimpap Burritos and Spicy Pork Tacos. The most successful food trucks graduate to full restaurant status. And who knows, some could go on to become full-fledged business franchises.

Another cool feature of food trucks is their mobility. Food truck operators can change venues with great ease, adding vibrancy to all manner of community events and gatherings. While the Virginia Beach ordinance allows food trucks to participate in such events, its limits the ability of owners to earn a living by restricting their ability to sell their wares when there aren’t such events, which is most of the time.

Food trucks are a great American invention. There is a moral case for allowing entrepreneurs the freedom to take risks, innovate, and follow their passions. There is an economic case for promoting food-service competition. And there is a quality-of-life case for encouraging culinary creativity and expanding eatery options for the public. Hopefully, Virginia Beach will vote for creativity, innovation, and vibrancy.