Launching Your Food Truck Business

Take the first step toward your dream of starting a food truck business with this one-day workshop. Get the real story from someone who has been there and done that, explore business startup basics, and learn all about licensing and regulation.

Key Program Information
Categories Professional and Workforce Development | Business
Program Type Non-Credit
Delivery Format Face-to-Face

Who Should Attend

Entrepreneurs and small business owners. Current food truck owners, or individuals interested in starting a food truck business.

Food Truck on UWEC Campus

Program Description

The ins and outs of starting a food truck

The food truck industry has been steadily increasing since 2008. The option to own and operate a food truck is becoming increasingly popular for entrepreneurs, restaurateurs, and small business owners due to the flexibility, lower start-up costs, fewer investments and in many cases a positive return on investment. The interest and popularity of Food Truck businesses are increasing in the Chippewa Valley and will likely continue due to two recently updated and approved Food Truck Ordinance in Eau Claire and Altoona which will permit mobile food businesses to expand their operating opportunities.

If you are an individual interested in starting a food truck business in the Chippewa Valley but are unsure of where to start, this course is for you!

In this course we will explore the following:

  • The culture of the food truck and how they help to enhance the vibrancy of a community 
  • Requirements for your operational plan, service-based sharing agreement and other licenses available
  • Available business assistance resources in the region
  • Development of a basic business startup plan 
  • Financial considerations of starting a mobile food business 
  • Food safety handling requirements

Get the opportunity to ask questions of our expert presenters and current food cart and food truck business owners during the closing panel discussion. 


Ray French is the Business Assistance Specialist with the City of Eau Claire’s Economic Development Division. The Division spearheaded the passage of a new mobile food truck ordinance by the City of Eau Claire and operates as a business’ first stop when requesting assistance for their business. Ray is an alumnus of UW-Eau Claire (’08) with more than 4 years’ experience in local government. He received his JD/MPA from Hamline University in St. Paul, MN.

Luke Kempen serves as the Director of the Small Business Development Center at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Luke's previous work experience included working in the audit division of a large international public accounting firm in Milwaukee as well as serving in senior finance and leadership positions in some fast growing private companies in Eau Claire. Luke also was a business owner having successfully started a business, growing it over a period of five years and selling it for profit. With his work background, Luke possesses extensive business experience in the areas of finance and accounting, leadership, strategic planning, project management and human resources. Luke also has direct experience with business startup, marketing, business planning and business sale/transition.

Luke holds a BBA in Accounting from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and is a graduate of the Executive Leadership Development Program at the University of Wisconsin Madison. Luke also is a Certified Public Accountant. He is currently pursuing an MBA degree at the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire.

Iris Lang is an Environmental Health Specialist with the Eau Claire City County Health Department. She is in charge of the Mobile Food Establishment program for the department. Iris graduated from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire with a degree in Environmental Public Health and started her career with the City of Madison Public Health Department where there is a rich culture of mobile food establishments.