Yet again, (sigh) gas prices are reaching record highs in California and thousands of its food trucks are feeling the sting of the pump. However, there are many food trucks from California to the East Coast that are now seeing (more of) the benefits of our favorite 2012 catch phrase, “going green.” Two of the biggest eco-cons for trucks are the amount of fuel needed and powering a large generator for on-board kitchen equipment. There are several ways trucks can help ease these costly and environmentally-detrimental concerns: alternative fuel use, harnessing wind and solar-power, cooking large batches elsewhere to preserve energy, recyclable and biodegradable packaging, and general mindfulness. Even mobile food bikes, powered completely by young ambition, have started growing in numbers in larger cities, like Chicago and San Francisco. Its one thing to serve high-quality, fresh and local ingredients, but doing so while also manning the wheel of an eco-conscious truck is a beautiful beautiful thing. Keep an eye out for our top green machine trail-blazers.
Sweetflow Mobile – Washington D.C.
Sweetflow Mobile is well-known for its locally sourced, organic frozen yogurt with an eco-friendly pulley system that replaces a gas powered generator. The pulley system reduces their emissions by 80-90%. You’re welcome Al Gore.
The Sustainable Kitchen – State College, PA
Like many other trucks on our list, The Sustainable Kitchen only brings organic, chemical-free meats and produce from the farm and garden onto its truck. However, what sets it apart, is the sustainable cooking classes Chef Andrew Monk gives while he’s not catering to his event and curb-side customers.
Fresh Local – Newington, N.H.
“Hello neighbor, might I borrow a cup of sugar for today’s featured menu items… oh, and also 30 dozen eggs?” The name says it all. Every menu item, down to every ingredient, is fresh and sourced from local farmers they’re proud to call their neighbors. Their truck runs on biodiesel and all disposable items are compostable. And the scraps go to the chickens!
Green Truck – Los Angeles & San Diego, CA
Both trucks cater to the green, eco-friendly gourmet foodie. The trucks utilize solar-power for their kitchen and alternative fuel to keep on rollin’ through their congested city streets. Every little bit (of less pollution) helps.
On the Fly – Washington, D.C.
Hooray for the SmartKart! These on-the-go green carts are designed specifically with mother earth in mind – zero-emissions and plug-in capacity.
The Brew Hub – Chicago, IL
This leg-powered caffeine machine is a pioneer of Chicago’s food bike trend. As owner Sara Travis puts it, she likes to “utilize the bike lanes without using electricity or gas to serve delicious things,” like cold-brewed iced coffee and home-made grapefruit soda. Look ma’, no hands!
Liba – San Francisco, CA
This Middle Eastern falafel joint is commendable for its compostable packaging and innovative use of its used oil that eventually gets turned into biofuel. What comes around goes around.
Oh My! Pocket Pies – Houston, TX
Sustainable comfort food at its best. But Oh my! Pocket Pies is also quite notable for its recycling regime – all packaging is biodegradable and waste is either recycled or composted.