The city of Sparwood is open for business.
The city council recently gave the green light for Yama2Go’s solar powered mobile sushi truck to operate at Sparwood’s Chamber of Commerce.
In years past, Sparwood had refused to allow mobile food vendors to operate in the city, said Coun. Harold Baytaluke, who wasn’t on council at the time.
“The administration was suggesting it is time. With all the activity in town, this is the opportunity for those who can make it to show their wares and see how it goes,” said Baytaluke.
An excert from the background information document prepared for the council states, “around the province, mobile vending has proven to bring people together and create another outlet for the public to have the convenience of street level products.”
Cam Carr, owner of the mobile sushi truck made sure that he had all is ducks in a row before applying to the council.
“I showed them all my insurance, business licenses, incorporations, health certificates, gas certificates and electrical certificates to show them I am all above board,” said Carr, adding that the only stipulation was he leaves the site as he found it and picks up all the garbage. “I do that anyway.”
Upon Carr’s suggestion, Sparwood is treating his mobile truck as a pilot program, so they could cancel it at any time if they find it is getting out of control.
“If they call it a pilot program the city can mandate it however they see fit, or cancel it at any point,” said Carr, who was reached via telephone while setting up for his first day in Sparwood.
Baytaluke liked the idea of a trial program.
“At some point we may get more vendors wanting to set up shop than we can fit into that space so there has to be a program developed to either rotate them or allow certain days for certain operators,” said Baytaluke.
Carr came up with the idea for the truck three years ago.
“Because we are completely solar powered it took a lot of mathematics and a lot of research to be able to run these things,” said Carr. “If you looked at 99 percent of the food trucks out there, they all have a big generator hanging off their back bumper at pretty much peak RPM all day long, and that’s not what we wanted to be.”
The reaction to the solar-powered truck has been huge, said Carr.
“We do a lot of music festivals. The idea that I can go in there and not tax their system at all is a bonus for them. They love it,” said Carr.
“It’s good for the environment. It is the lowest footprint out of any catering truck that I know of. “