How do I start a food truck business in Indiana?

Posted by Damian Roberti on

How do I start a food truck business  in Indiana?

 what food truck permit in Indiana do you need? Well, welcome to food truck freaks. Youtube's premier food truck and entrepreneur channel. This is a brand new channel. We are not new to YouTube. We actually have three other food entrepreneur channels. You can check out all our links down below in the video, but in this particular video, we're going to cover all the permits and licenses that you would probably need to get your Indiana food truck up and running. And what I mean by "probably" is that, of course, every city and county vary as to what they might need, but these are the general permits and licenses that many food trucks are required to have. And we're going to run through that list and check out the free additional resources below the video on our website as well. Let's jump right into it.

So if you're looking to start a food truck business in Indiana, it actually is a great idea. Here are a few reasons why food trucks are still brilliant ideas, even with so many in multiple counties and cities across the United States and rapidly expanding: it's not a huge investment.If you're wanting to get into the restaurant business or food industry, investing in a restaurant compared to a food truck is a much smaller investment. The risk, if you happen to start a food truck, and maybe it's just not your thing, or maybe it doesn't work out financially, is not going to be as heavy of a loss as it would be for a restaurant or something on a larger scale. You have fewer employees. In many cases, you can do as many shows as you wish, and you can do it all. and that allows you to create a huge amount of revenue in comparison to a brick and mortar, where you're relying on the customer to come directly to you.

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How do I start a food truck in Indiana?



You can attend gigantic festivals, farmers' markets, fairs, things that could have 20 or 30, 40,000 people on a weekend or even five or 6,000 people. So the variety of what you can make is gigantic and enormous, but it's not a huge investment in comparison to brick and mortar, having run an actual Italian bakery and a sandwich shop myself. I can tell you that our brick and mortar cost way more than just running a food truck. So let's dive into these specific permits and licenses. Now you're going to need an EI, which is known as an employer identification number. That is something you can get directly from the IRS website. That is an IRS issued number. It's kind of like a social security number for your business. Okay? Now the reason why you need that is that down the road, as you have personnel, you have employees, you're going to need help.

And when you hire them, you're going to need to have an employer identification number for tax purposes and to keep track of all of that income coming in and going out. So make sure that you get an EIN. Obviously, your accountant will tell you that you're going to need one and make sure that's one of the first things you do right off the bat, next to your business license. So, of course, to operate any type of food business in general, just a traditional standard business license issued by the city or the county that you're actually operating your food truck in, in Indiana. You need to make sure that you get a business license. Now, in some counties and cities, as you cross over those lines, most states will require additional business licenses or permits to operate the mobile food truck in those counties and cities, because


How do I start a food truck in Indiana?

Technically, you're operating in a totally different city or a totally different county. Even though it is your food truck and it's issued in one specific place, you're going to be generating money and having a business operation in a separate county. They're going to want to make sure that you have a license in that next county up. Now this might be a no brainer, but I'll tell you why this is super important: a valid driver's license. Of course, you need a valid driver's license for you to actually drive your food truck around town. But the most important reason why is because if you have an employee or you have a worker on your food truck and you are not on that food truck that day, if that employee doesn't have a valid license, or anyone who is on the vehicle, who's operating the vehicle, driving around, remember this: your food truck is your business.

It is your livelihood. Okay? If you have an employee who's driving and they have a suspended license, or they have a license, but they don't have it on them and they get into an accident, or they run a red light, or they get pulled over by a police officer, You, the owner of the food truck, have the potential to lose your food truck license, or you could get a, obviously, a ticket, and you could get your license suspended. as the owner, keep in mind that it may sound kind of fun, kind of vague, but yes, a valid driver's license for whomever is behind the wheel. If you're not going to be the one driving, you can have a lot of liability on your hands. So make sure at all times that whoever is driving your vehicle has a valid driver's license issued by the state of Indiana.


And they have the ability to drive the vehicle. Now in some cities and counties, too, double check within the county that you're in. They may require a certain class license to drive a food truck. I've heard of this before. Many, many counties and cities throughout the U.S. It's not a state thing. It's actually a city or county thing that they're going to require you to have a special permit or special license to drive the sides of your truck, similar to what they issue for food truck drivers, but actually big 18-wheeler truck drivers have a different class of licensing. So make sure that's something you need next to a seller's permit. So a food truck owner basically needs to have a seller's permit, which allows you to buy your ingredients at wholesale prices. A lot of food truck first-timers don't realize this, but you should never pay tax when you purchase ingredients.


How do I start a food truck in Indiana?


If you purchase any foods or veggies, well, whoever you're getting from your vendors locally or even stores, you need to make sure you get a tax exemption that allows you to not pay taxes on that particular ingredient, because you're going to collect taxes when you sell that. Does that make sense? And this is something that's allowed just for new people. If you're new and you haven't understood this before, that is something that will happen. You can simply just not pay taxes on the ingredients, but you're going to collect that when you sell it to your customer. Okay? Next up, the ultra important, very important food safety certification, or food handlers' permit, as it's known. A food handler's permit is required in many cities and counties for employees who work on the food truck, prepare food, and store food.If you're refrigerating at the end of the day, once you clean up everything about the preparation of the food,

The serving of it and storing of the food has to be done correctly because you don't want people to get sick with an ingredient that you have because you did not understand how to properly seal it, properly contain it, or cook it. So food handlers permits, and they're also something that if it's not required, if you have your staff, you have your employees on your food truck, go through a permit program and get the food handler's card. It's also going to be a benefit for you because that way you're not questioning whether or not something was cooked correctly, or if this was sanitized correctly, or if this was in storage. So a food handler's permit is something that you may also need as well. And if you don't check into just getting one anyway, the health department, so that's the next one up. You're going to be inspected by your local health department.

You're going to have to have a permit now. Normally, by the way, food trucks will have to have a commissary or a commercial kitchen that they are attached to. And what I mean by that is that every food truck will have to prepare food, prepare ingredients, empty out dirty water for the day, their garbage, their trash. So, having a commissary kitchen is normally a normal thing for food trucks to have. So if you're within a certain city or county, you'll be attached to that particular commercial kitchen or that particular commissary kitchen. So in Indiana, make sure you double check with the county and make sure that you've got one of those, because that's probably also gon na be the place where you're gon na be preparing your ingredients. And the reason why I say it probably is because most of the food prep prior to going to an event with a food truck has to be done in a commissary kitchen or commercial kitchen.

How do I start a food truck in Indiana?


Very few actually allow you to cook, prepare, and do everything on the food truck. 100%. So having the day's ingredients set up, having fresh water for the day, emptying out any dirt, dirty water from your event, getting your crash disposal, all of that stuff is done on a daily basis. Every time you do an event, that's most likely what you're going to need. So, having that license from a commissary kitchen is what the health department is predominantly going to look for. And you may also need to have what's known as a commissary letter of agreement. This is actually the contract you're going to have with the particular commercial kitchen or commissary. And you need to make sure that you have that as well, because a lot of states also require you to keep that letter on your food truck next. And lastly, a fire certificate, a fire permit, and the inspection from the fire department.

In most cases, they're going to look for, and also request, that you have multiple fire extinguishers. You're going to make sure that your propane generators or gas generators are hooked up correctly, that you understand all of the electrical work that's been done. If you have a customized truck, it has to be up to code, and it's going to be inspected by the fire department as well. So be sure that you check with the county on that as well. Your fire department will have to come in and look at the fire. If it happens to be where all the units are, a lot of states will even require you to actually have a design or a drawing or a draft of the interior, how everything is laid out before they even issue a permit or license. So find out for sure whether or not you're going to need a fire certificate as well. So all in all, these are the most simplistic and basic permits and licenses that you're going to need.

How do I start a food truck in Indiana?


Within the city that you're gonna operate from. Also, like I said before, check to make sure that you may or may not have to have those additional permits every time you cross the line into another city or county that you gotta have that business license in order for you to operate, keep in mind too, any sales tax you collect. You've gotta remit that and send that to the state either annually every six months or quarterly, every three months. Now us as a, as our, as our business is concerned. Cause I operate a food business. We do it every year, just once a year. But you need to make sure that your, your state sets you up on a specific payment process and payment plan for that. Okay? So those are permits and licenses that the majority of food trucks will always need to have.

You need to make sure that you have the right ones and also follow any parking permits that you may need as well. That's something that comes up too, is that you may need to pay for the parking specifically in a certain part of the area where you're gonna go. It also is for duration of time and is limiting you also to where you can do it. Keep in mind any of the local municipalities and laws that are set up specifically for parking your food truck as well. Well, if you guys are new to the channel, best subscribe, definitely subscribe. We have a lot of great new content. That'll be filling up our channel and I'll see you guys on our next video.


How do I start a food truck in Indiana?