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City extends mobile food vendors trial run
Food truck ceres
The city of Ceres is offering to allow classy food trucks like this one to do business at select locations in town on a trial basis.

A pilot program to allow up to 10 mobile food vendors be permitted to do business in Ceres will be extended for another year.

Last October members of the Ceres City Council kicked off a mobile food vendor program on a limited basis for a six-month trial period. With the trial run coming to a close, the council decided to continue it for another 12 months.

Tom Westbrook, director of Community Development for the city of Ceres, said food trucks are only allowed in commercial or industrial areas to supplement existing businesses, notably bars, tap rooms or River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center.

Only two vendors have taken up the opportunity and members are hoping another 12 month period will encourage more. One is at River Oaks and the other is on Whitmore Avenue.

Westbrook said food trucks are not allowed in any industrial location in Ceres. For decades taco trucks and other types of food trucks weren’t allowed in Ceres. 

Vendors are required to have access to restroom and washing facilities within 200 feet if they operate for four or more hours, and that trucks have at least 1,000 feet between them. They also must have access to waste dumpsters as well as have garbage cans nearby. Outdoor tables are not allowed. Vendors are not allowed to operate after midnight and not before 7 a.m. They will not be able to set up signs or pennants.

Food trucks are allowed to set up at commercial businesses like Home Depot on Hatch Road.

Trucks will not be allowed to operate in city parks or on streets but only in commercial or industrial zones.

At the end of the 12 months the council could decide to permanently allow mobile vendors through the Municipal Code or ban them altogether depending on how well or how bad the program goes.

Westbrook said the 12-month extension may lead to others deciding to apply, given the reluctance to commit expensive professional type food trucks.