Having a meatball or two
The Co-Founder of the Food Truck Association in Malaysia also created her own kingdom in the shape of the Meatball Kingdom food truck. Ms Dunia Stapmans, originally from Germany has been in Malaysia for almost three years and shares with us what it takes to run a successful food truck.
She started with a food catering business using a premium European brand concept in the early days after she came to Malaysia. “The catering business is an on and off business, you cannot plan. I was then looking for a regular income with food businesses, therefore the idea of starting a food truck came,” said Ms. Stapmans.
“A food truck is a flexible business, in my point of view, not requiring much investment to put in compared to a restaurant. The idea was to have something which is movable so that you can go where your customers are and no hassle for them to come to your place. We also wanted to incorporate the street food concept, but with a high quality food and using a high quality truck,” she added.
According to Stapmans, as a foreigner, the process of putting a food truck on the road in Malaysia is not as hard as she thought and all the procedures went smoothly to get the truck going. She found a company that builds the vehicle according to her ideal design she wanted. “I told them about my workflow and they modelled the interior of the truck the way needed it to be,” she said.
“The food truck concept is more related to the current generation these days. A food truck looks fresher and fun, and when we go to a festival or a concert, food trucks make the environment more happening than a normal street stall,” she explained.
It took her eight months to prepare her very own food truck. Mr Kamsul, the driver of the truck has been working with her for almost 3 years (having joined the company even before the food truck came into existance). “Apart from driving the truck, I’m the one that handles the “Halal” logo for the food, selling the food and also assist Ms. Dunia to cook the food or prepare the ingredients. Our main area is in town, so our little truck has just the right size to move here and there and around the town and it is easy to park. The longest distance we went was going to an event in Tronoh, Perak,” said Kamsul.
Using a one ton Daihatsu Granmax, the truck was chosen because the back of the truck is not too high and easy to take any order from the customers. The investment made just for the truck was RM 130,000 including the design of the mobile restaurant.