EGOS Conference paper on sustainable food trucks
From July 5-8 Astrid Kramer and Marjan Groen will attend the EGOS conference in Copenhagen (Denmark). They will present a paper entitled: “Serving up with a purpose; unpacking the hybrid identity of sustainable food truck entrepreneurs in the Netherlands.” Based on interviews with 25 founders of food trucks, they explore why and how these people integrate sustainability in their business. Among the respondents are food truck owners who have chosen for vegetarian or vegan food, organic or locally produced ingredients, or insects. Most founders want to do good by serving up good food. “We make the world better and more fair, step by step, party by party”, sums up nicely how they see their contribution. Running a sustainable food truck business creates practical challenges for the entrepreneurs, and they deal with those in a practical manner. For instance, if you claim that all your ingredients are organic, you have a problem when you run out of stock at a festival, and you can’t just get extra supplies from a local wholesaler. Many entrepreneurs also mentioned that driving an oldtimer van does not really contribute to sustainability, and they came up with various solutions to limit the damage, such as driving less. One business created their own fully electric food truck. But these are practical issues. At the core of the business is a hybrid identity, where profitability and sustainability are equally important, and are not regarded as opposites. The food truck is created with one vision in mind.