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AdWeek reports on how Sizzler, Applebee's, Taco Bell and a number of other national restaurant chains are trying "to crack the code of food truck culture. Even companies that aren’t in the business of slinging hash have begun including food trucks in their marketing plans. Last year, for example, the Gap deployed food trucks in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco as part of a two-month promotion for its 1969 apparel collection. And this past spring, NBC’s Today show commissioned a pair of food trucks to make its presence known at the annual SXSW festival.

"But is there really room for Big Macs and Jumbo Jacks alongside all those organic s’mores and sustainable grilled cheese sandwiches?"

The story goes on:

"To die-hard fans, 'corporate food truck' may be an oxymoron along the lines of 'caffeine-free energy drink' or 'eco-friendly SUV.' Food trucks are in vogue precisely because they are an antidote to corporate chains, with their dull, processed and, more often than not, unhealthy eats. Food trucks became hot by offering fresh, artisanal and sometimes daring fare in limited quantities at select locations - status dining for foodie elites on a Groupon budget.

"And yet, given its explosive popularity and intrinsic marketing value, one could hardly expect the food truck to stay trapped in such a narrowly circumscribed paradigm."

The co-oping of food truck culture by corporate behemoths is being done for two basic reasons: it allows them the ability to bring their products to locations not served by their bricks-and-mortar units, and it gives their brands a "cool" billboard with a bit of panache.
KC's View:
This is where I know that I've become a total food snob. because I'd rather have a colonoscopy than buy anything from a Sizzler, Applebee's, Taco Bell, Red Robin or Jack in the Box food truck.

I hadn't had much exposure to the whole trend before spending July in Portland, Oregon, but I was totally captivated by the whole thing there - the food was good, affordable and generally interesting in a way that corporate food will never be.

I disagree with the USA Today columnist who recently wrote that food trucks are a negative culinary trend, are not nearly as innovative as they get credit for, and are just a fad that will soon, mercifully, go away. I think they are wonderful, especially because they are all about the food - not artifice, not pretension, and certainly not about the kind of plastic food that so many of these corporate restaurants peddle to the masses.

The good news, I hope, is that corporate entities tend to have short attention spans. They'll view this as a fad and move on, leaving the guy on the corner selling Hawaiian/Korean barbecue to do his thing. I hope.