Andrew Gerson is hoping his truck, Strada Pasta, will be ready to roll in a few weeks. He'll serve hand-rolled pastas, fresh sauces, and lasagna, to name a few Italianate dishes. Gerson thinks of his truck as a sustainable, alternative method of bringing accessible food to different areas of the city.
And he's spent a lot of time researching the way other cities (specifically Los Angeles and Portland, Ore.) have created prosperous mobile food industries. What he thinks our budding scene is missing: a central organization. Which is why he helped set up the first meeting of the Philadelphia Food Truck Association, on Dec. 12 at the Free Library. "We want to create a cohesive working relationship and open dialogue," says Gerson.
His goals are both communal and political. He hopes the association will allow truckers to share information (about such things as affordable commissaries and trucks) and work with the city and activist groups to use trucks for good. For example, he says there are 6,000 abandoned lots in the city and he envisions that one day, trucks will be allowed to "turn them into something useful," by transforming these lots into sites for trucks selling food at a fair cost to city residents.