3 Reasons Why Food Truck Owners Should Consider Getting Into The Craft Services Game

Food Truck Business Owner - server

What is craft services?

Craft services is the department on a film, television, or video production that provides snacks and beverages to cast and crew. It’s also an excellent way for food truck business owners to obtain a new set of customers.

Craft services is often confused with catering which is the department responsible for the crew’s hot breakfast and sit-down lunch but here’s the difference:

Catering personnel leave the set once lunch has been served while the craft service person(s) remain on set for the entire workday. The reason for this is that craft service is considered a crew position while catering is treated as a vendor.

Craft service history

From the 1920s to the 1940s craft services wasn’t associated with food at all much less food trucks! It was a labor position created to help out the “crafts” i.e. grips, electricians, prop masters, set decorators, sound engineers, etc. The craft service person would hold cables, hang lights, lay dolly tracks, and wrangle animals.

It wasn’t until the mid 1960s that craft service started to become associated with food. Legend has it that a craft service person at Universal Studios in Hollywood decided to deliver coffee from a cart to the crafts. He later added doughnuts and over time craft service evolved into food service.

Today’s craft service providers are not involved in any of those past activities. Their sole responsibility now is to feed hungry cast and crew members during film, television, commercials, and video shoots. 

Here are three reasons why I believe food truck business owners should consider craft services:

  1. Opportunity to showcase your culinary prowess
  2. Freedom to travel to different locations
  3. You’ll never be bored 

Opportunity For Food Truck Business Owners To Showcase Culinary Prowess

Food truck business owner snacksUnlike the set caterer who generally sticks to a standard menu of meat, starch, vegetable, salad, and dessert, the craft service provider can prepare a wide variety of snack foods for the cast and crew. You can serve anything from mini vegetarian tacos to salami finger sandwiches!

You’re only limited by two things: your imagination and, of course, the budget. But even with a limited budget if you have a little ingenuity you can come up with some tasty craft service snack ideas.

you may also be interested in: 16 tasty snacks that won’t break the craft service budget.

You also have a fully equipped kitchen at your disposal to prepare all types of goodies. Whereas craft service providers like myself, who are not food truck owners, are limited in what we can prepare. We generally choose no-cook snacks or snack foods that can be prepared in a toaster oven.

In addition to your mobile kitchen, you probably also own some of the other equipment needed for craft services. See the list of items here.

Freedom To Travel To Different Locations

Food truck business owners fieldAs a food truck business owner you probably spend most of your workdays in the same location. As a craft service provider for a movie or television show you will get to explore different locations daily. This not only exposes you to area of your city/state that may not have otherwise visited but can bring added exposure to your food truck business.

I’m a native New Yorker and over the last 10 years as a craft service provider, I’ve traveled to places in the city and state that I didn’t know existed. I’ve set up craft services everywhere from the majestic mountain ranges of upstate New York to the white sandy beaches of Montauk.

you may also be interested in: getting started in craft services

Finally, Food Truck Business Owners Will Never Be Bored

Food Truck Business Owner - Movie setThere’s no time for boredom on a production set. Everyday can bring a different set of circumstances to the food truck business owner. One day you may prepare snacks for a 75 person crew and the next day find yourself running around like a chicken without a head serving snacks to an additional 100 background actors when you were told there should have only been 25.

Or, some days you’ll spend the greater part of an hour setting up your craft service table only to be told to move it across the street because the director wants to shoot a scene where your craft service is set up. Sometimes it’s your food truck that has to move a block away for the very same reason.

Finally, when you’re not busy serving up snacks to the hardworking cast and crew, there’s always something interesting to watch on set… An explosion, a stunt, a car chase or an emotional scene between two actors.

No siree, never a dull moment!

Have you ever used your food truck for craft services? Please leave a comment below about your experience for my readers considering craft services.

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