Local Food Truck Scene Continues To Evolve

Food Giant Sysco Under USDA Investigation

Print advertisement The USDA would not specify when the department began looking into the food distributor, only stating that the investigation began after USDA received a complaint to their Alameda district office from a local meat trade association. The complaint came from staffers in the association shortly after they saw NBC Bay Areas report exposing Syscos dirty food sheds. The federal investigation is the latest development in the Sysco saga after NBC Bay Area uncovered Syscos longstanding, widespread, practice of storing raw meat, dairy and produce in unrefrigerated sheds across the U.S. and Canada. Inspectors with the CA Dept. of Public Health were the first to respond in July with an investigation that has uncovered at least 21 sheds throughout California used by Sysco to store food. In September, Canadian health officials launched an investigating that uncovered 15 facilities in Ontario. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said these facilities are now being assessed. Rep. Sam Farr, D-Santa Cruz is the ranking member of the Appropriations subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development and Food and Drug Administration. Farr called Syscos food storage practices a huge violation of public trust. Were very concerned because this Sysco problem violates the trust the growers have in growing the safest food in the world and the producers of meat and poultry in abiding by the federal laws that are the toughest in the world, Farr told NBC Bay Area The problem is the handlers and what happens in the time it leaves the security of the grower or producers and gets to the restaurants. Farr said the NBC Bay Area investigation exposed a major flaw in food handling practices by a company that should be an industry leader. I think this is going to require the transportation industry and the handling industry to upgrade those protocols and if they wont do it themselves then government will do it for them, Farr said. The problem is one food safety experts have warned about for years, calling for stronger enforcement to protect food as it travels from farm to fork. Everyone has to start questioning whats going on in the industry, food safety expert Dr.

JILL TOYOSHIBA/Kansas City Star | JILL TOYOSHIBA/Kansas City Star The popularity of Port Fonda the food truck launched Port Fonda, the successful brick-and-mortar restaurant in Westport. Patrick Ryans Port Fonda , upscale Mexican cuisine served from an Airstream trailer, debuted at The Stars first Food Truck Friday event three years ago. The food was such a hit the lines wrapped around the parking lot until there was hardly a scrap of food left to sell. A few months later Ryan began working on his Westport restaurant. A year later the successful restaurateur announced the Town Co., his second restaurant , opening in 2014. Chef Kelli Daniels used the Good You, a food trailer specializing in gourmet burgers and sandwiches, to launch herself into an executive chef position at the Elms Hotel and Spa in Excelsior Springs, and El Tenedors chef Carmen Cabia, of the late Lills at 17th and Summit, reinvented herself, serving up paella, croquettes, vegetarian bruschetta, almond soup and other Spanish tapas from a small vintage trailer. Little Freshie went from trailer to a specialty soda shop on 17th St., and just last week Taco Republic opened in Kansas City, Kan., across from Oklahoma Joes. Taco Republic is a Bread & Buttter Concept (think BRGR, Urban Table and Gram & Dun). To build brand recognition and refine the menu, a Taco Republic Truck hit the streets earlier this summer. The Stars Food editor Jill Silva recently talked about the flourishing food truck scene with KCTV5 reporter Betsy Webster.

Food franchisees face low pay, long hours

Read the report. Not an easy path to success Investing in a food franchise can also take substantially more start-up capital than other types of franchises, thanks to real-estate, equipment and supply costs, plus other expenses. Still, the initial investment can vary from as low as $34,500 to as high as $4 million, depending on the type of restaurant, the report said. While starting any type of franchise may be easier than launching an independent small business, franchising is not really an easy path to success, Stites said. Key mistakes to avoid The surveys finding that satisfaction is lower among food franchisees than other types of franchisees is not unusual, Stites said. The food sector is a little bit more complicated a business to run, he said, noting that its often very employee heavy, plus entails dealing with fluctuating food prices, the potential for food spoilage and other challenges. On top of that, youve got probably some of the slimmest profit margins of any business, he said. Franchisees without prior restaurant experience may be in for a rude awakening. In the food business, typically people are working 50, 60 hours a week. Theyre managing lots of teenagers or a first-entry-level-job type of employee, Stites said. If youve come out of the corporate world, maybe you had an executive assistant, maybe you had a team of people to help you do projects, you buy a food franchisechances are youre not going to do well. Satisfaction varies by company Another driver of satisfaction, or lack thereof: How the franchiser treats its franchisees. There are companies that are transparent and have a very inclusive culture, Stites said. They see their franchisees as partners.

Proposed reduction in food stamps program is fair and compassionate

Job searches are brutal on the ego, and government programs can act as a disincentive to keep on trying, ultimately delaying the satisfaction and self-respect that comes from earning a paycheck. Up to $10,000 a year in food stamps is a powerful incentive to stay home. Lacking attractive job options, a person might decide that a 20-hour-a-week retail or restaurant job is not worth it, even as a stop-gap measure until the economy improves. The status quo has an even more pernicious effect on children. One of the most profound ways parents demonstrate love for a child is by providing for his basic needs. Through their sacrifice, children experience love and learn from example what it means to be a good parent. When I was a kid, my dad was an appliance salesman at Sears and later a tire salesman. My mom took in ironing, watched other people’s children, and occasionally cleaned houses. Like the factory work my grandparents did, these jobs were not flashy or ego-stoking; they put food on the table. Every day, my parents demonstrated the value of work and the beauty of providing for a family in way that a high-profile career, with all of its intrinsic rewards, might not have. Is it not a slap in the face to people who work hard, thankless jobs to support those who don’t work? Ben Franklin said it best: “I am for doing good to the poor, but … I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. I observed … that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer.