Following months of skirmishes, the battle is on between food truck foes and food truck fans, with Tom LaBonge on one side trying to disperse these mobile restaurants more evenly across Wilshire and Save Our Food Trucks leading the charge against his new motions on the other. The L.A. Business Journal looks at another heavy group fighting for the trucks, The SoCal Mobile Food Vendors Association, which started during the early interventions of LAPD in Mid-Wilshire last summer and is now 50,000 Twitter followers strong. Both groups are challenging LaBonge’s proposals to space food trucks out on Wilshire, with one at every other block. So where does this leave the Loncheros Association, who successfully fought for the rights of taco trucks two years ago and inspired the creation of The SoCal MFVA?
Asociacion de Loncheros are pretty pissed-off that today’s trendy trucks have shown so little street-smarts, bringing these issues back into the political spotlight. The organization has routinely kept its members away from brick-and-mortar restaurants, something that the current fleet brazenly flouts. Erin Glenn, chief executive of Loncheros, says the new trucks’ behavior has caused problems for taco truck vendors, explaining, “To have to deal with this issue when we worked so hard in the county and city to say, ‘Look, we’re operating according to the rules,’ - to have this new group of vendors come in and not take into account anything we’ve done - is kind of a slap in the face.” Ouch! Nonetheless, Glenn supports the Mobile Food Vendors Association’s assertion of its rights, offering, “I think they’ve been successful. They know how to utilize social media and that’s worked out really well for them.”
Similar to the local medical marijuana issue, it appears that the more low-key food truck vendors, trying to abide by whatever loose laws have been established, are getting needless attention due to those who openly promote their wares, regardless of who’s kids are standing nearby. Speaking of which, a food truck selling marijuana-laced lollipops made an appearance yesterday at the Laker’s victory parade Downtown. Owner Bilal Muhammad tells the L.A. Times that he got his motor running once his dispensary was shut down in WeHo and that it’s “working out well for him,” despite scattering when LAPD appeared. Muhammad only sells to those with medical marijuana prescription cards, but it is practically guaranteed that in the current climate, where both food trucks and medical marijuana are declared public enemies, that his Weed World Candy van won’t be visible for very long.
L.A. Food Trucks Set to Serve Up Battle for Rights [L.A. Business Journal]
Marijuana lollipops for sale on Lakers parade route [L.A. Times]