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Food Cart news in Toronto Star.

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  1. These Toronto council BUFFOONS need to take a lesson from the city of Portland, OR.


    4 Replies
    1. re: Splendid Wine Snob

      Portland is a great example of a city that got it right when it comes to the Food Truck/Cart Trend (Austin, TX as well)

      But honestly is there another city that got in more WRONG than Toronto? They could learn from basically anyone out there.

      1. re: Matt H

        I'm guessing it just may have something to do with Ontario picking up the tab for our health care? Hmmm? So, when Senor Salmonella's Taco Van dishes up "free market" toxic grub, you pay the tab to put you right? Are you in? Doubtful. BTW, bipedalism is all most of us have in common with that dolt Ford.

        1. re: Kagemusha

          What great logic, I guess you should send that message to Israel, Singapore, Taiwan, etc....because last I checked they "picked up the tab" as well (and contrary to popular belief most US states do as well, but that is another topic)

          I dunno, maybe health inspectors can do their job and ensure the safety of the products being served like everywhere else. This was a disaster from the start and has absolutely nothing to do with concern over health costs.

          1. re: Matt H

            Maybe but the TO health inspectors, not to mention Canadian Federal inspectors, have enough to do with chasing gypsy carts and trucks. Funny how anarchy is cool until somebody gets hurt, then it's caveat emptor, right?

    2. That's really too bad. The only one I've tried Bridgette Pinder's and it's really good.

      1. I'm with Matt H and Splendid Wine Snob on this one. It's a shame that the project didn't take off because of greed and red tape. It's actually embarassing that things were so mishandled. I understand the government wants a handle on everything but if they want to run a project successfully they need to rely on experts and call in people who know a thing or two about the food cart industry. Or since that would cost more money (less in their pockets) observe how another city runs it. Don't go into something you know nothing about blindly.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Sarah_G

          Frankly, TO and the province have waaaay bigger fish to fry than sorting out taco and roti carts. What about the TTC? Public housing? K-12 education? C'mon.

          1. re: Kagemusha

            Right. I agree that transportation in the city is more of a priority, but your point has no relevance on this food board.

            1. re: Kagemusha

              Kagemusha you raise a valid point, but it also begs the question of why the city felt the need to "over" regulate the program to begin with.

              1. re: damonster

                No interest in defending City Hall but I suspect what began as cautiousness morphed into oppression simply for lack of enthusiasm or knowledge. I just don't want to see anarchy become the norm when it comes to inspection and licensing.

                1. re: Kagemusha

                  I think it started out as "Oh, goodie, we've got a new project on our hands. Let's figure out how big a budget we can squeeze through all in the name of protecting citizens," and then came a hiring spree and too many bureaucrats filling their time by putting their noses where they didn't belong in areas they had no expertise in. Just another example of waste that we pay for, and the vendors have suffered because of it.

          2. I never did understand why food carts were subjected to a higher degree of scrutiny and regulation than new restaurants. It's an insult to our intelligence for the City to infer that the endless policies and protracted process were all in the interest of protecting public health and safety . I'm guessing most of us have been to a restaurant and if the food is awful, or the conditions look unsanitary we just don't go back.

            There was no good reason for the gov't to be so involved in this process. In my view, they saw it as a cash grab. IIts a disgrace that these entrepreneurial individuals were casualties in this fiasco.

            1. Even more proof that we live in a jerk-arsed run City, in a jerk-arsed run Province.

              6 Replies
              1. re: PoppiYYZ

                OK, so go DIY healthcare, too, when one of those "entrepreneurial individuals" whips up a load of contaminated artisanal sausages that might sicken or kill a few dozen(or hundred) people. Not my kind of place. You willing to pick-up the hospital tab? Doubtful.


                1. re: Kagemusha

                  The vast majority of the planet Earth has street food. In most cases excellent, healthy, and affordable street food. I would like to have the same opportunity.

                  1. re: PoppiYYZ

                    ROTFL! You shouldn't deny yourself, then, the "opportunity" for serious bacterial contamination, Hep, and maybe the odd intestinal parasite. Much of Planet Earth's "street food" ain't up to Singapore standards--trust me. It's amusing how Canadian tourists' prissiness about local sanitation and food and water safety abroad as a source of trouble miraculously vanishes here. The illogic is stunning.

                  2. re: Kagemusha

                    Agree completely with Poppi, what is the reason for the extreme paranoia? Almost every city has safe, affordable street food that is regulated by a government board to ensure its safety. I do not see why it has to be so difficult in Toronto.

                    Plus as I said in an earlier reply, there are many countries which have universal healthcare and still find a way to allow their residents to enjoy something as "dangerous" as street food.

                    1. re: Matt H

                      Agree with Poppi and Matt. There must be a way to regulate them and ensure basic safety without unnecessary red tape, etc.

                      1. re: pescatarian

                        There are definitely ways to regulate w/o stifling entrepreneurial spirit under an avalanche of red tape. Witness many of the cities and countries that have successful street food scenes. Whether the city will follow the best practices already laid out or try and continue to develop their own (to mixed results) is to be seen.