Students might not have noticed the Millersville University Food truck on campus this semester, but it’s been in service since Dec. 9, 2013. The truck currently resides on the Benchmark construction sites, and is open on a daily basis to the construction workers who are building the new resident halls. Future plans for the truck include catering to Cooper stadium baseball games, spring break conference groups, and eventually late night and finals week services to students.
Students can expect to see the truck parked in parking lots, and perhaps eventually in the streets of Lancaster city on First Friday later this spring.
The birth of the MU food truck was inspired by the university’s desire to be nationally competitive with other schools. Campuses all over the nation have food trucks that cater to students and events. It was noted that food trucks are a growing trend and that “Food trucks are becoming very popular and many watch Food Truck Wars on the Food Network,” said Ed Nase of Dining Services.
The food that will be served from the truck will include a range of menu items such as breakfast sandwiches, bagels, deli sandwiches, subs, hamburgers, hotdogs, steak sandwiches, sausage, French Fries, soup, hot and cold beverages, bakery selections, and snacks. A desire from the students on campus has been expressed for quick and healthy snacks to be made available from the truck as well.
The food truck is equipped with a grill, flat top stove, a steam table, double fryers, large fridge and freezer, an oven, a three bay sink for washing, rinsing, and sanitizing dishes, and a hand sink in order to be able to prepare food and maintain food safety. Every day the truck is stocked with new food, and the water tank is filled with fresh water.
From the outside, the truck is sporting a black and gold pirate theme. The vehicle came custom built from New Jersey, and was bought by the University as what was described as a “significant investment.”
The volume of business was reported as lower than anticipated, which is in part due to unfortunate weather conditions. One might inquire why such a significant investment, said to be for the purpose of enhancing student life, has not yet been made available to students, particularly in the light of its lower than expected profitable return so far.
The prevalence of food trucks on campus is not expected to grow, as competition is not permitted on MU campus. The Director of Dining and Conference Services stated that “Food Trucks are not permitted on the Millersville University campus, unless operated by Dining and Conference Services.”
The Marauder food truck is held in high anticipation by the Dining and Conference Services, and is expected to bring in profitable returns within a few years. Excitement for the truck is high among many of its staff members as well, and is foreseen to be well received by students of MU. Many students would agree that they’re ready to see the truck made available to them in the streets, and only time will tell how well it will go over.