About the Project

“There’s a revolution happening in food, and it’s happening on the street!”

Defined as the provision of ready-to-eat foods/beverages sold and prepared in public, Street food has grown from the success of farmers’ markets, festivals and general out-of-home eating and builds on consumer interest in health, artisan and “world” food.

Nestled between added-value food (industry) and hospitality/catering (services), Street food is a subsector of Food & Beverages, Europe’s largest sector in turnover (€956 billion) and employment (4.1 million). France, Germany, UK and Spain have the largest sectors and across partner countries it accounts for 6-8% of economy and 10% of employment. EU wide statistics are hampered by the newness of the sector, but in 2007 the UK had 5000 mobile catering companies with a turnover of £680 million, rising to £760 million in 2010. In the Netherlands, 41% of itinerant traders are food companies, representing about 20,000 full time workers.

Yet Street food reveals deficiencies in VET provision. Training focuses on traditional catering and hospitality (bars, restaurants) or food science/hygiene/safety (for retail), while Street food success is based on gourmet food, changing market trends, practical trader skills, and contemporary marketing, especially social media and GPS. Lacking these skills, many mobile fastfood vendors are unable to make the transition to Street food, current vendors struggle with profitability and would-be entrepreneurs are deterred from entry.

StreetFood: Opportunities for Entrepreneurship identifies street food as a growth sector in the world of work and will improve training for entry/upskilling in the sector via close cooperation between VET and food sector. We aim to provide the practical advice, tools and the confidence to manage street food businesses effectively and profitably.

The immediate aim is to convert NCASS’s innovative www.streetfood.org and Guide To Profitable Catering and add to these materials to form an online learning course available in multilingual format for use across Europe, especially in partner countries. This will be targeted at current street vendors who wish to update their skills/business model and budding entrepreneurs, with particular relevance for youth, immigrants and those from agricultural backgrounds.