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What insurances do mobile food van businesses need?

Do you have a mobile food van, a food truck or a coffee cart? You know it’s complex running a business that is both a busy hospitality business while also navigating the complexities of being mobile and working in a public space. So of course your risk profile is also complex, spanning the risks of both a food service business as well as the risks of a commercial vehicle business - and a fully kitted out commercial vehicle at that.

What risks do mobile food vans face?

Mobile food vans and food trucks face all of the regular risks of any hospitality business. This includes risks to the public such as food poisoning, burns or trips, risks to your specialty equipment, risk of fire or theft or risk of harm to employees.

On top of that a mobile food van business also faces additional risks or greater exposure to the same risks. Are employees at greater risk of falls or burns when working in a movable vehicle? What are the implications of working in a high traffic public space? Is the public exposed to electrical cabling or generators? Is food safety as easy to achieve in a mobile space with fridges that run on multiple power sources? What about employee safety during transit? Or the exposure of the premises, in this case a truck or van, to storms, flood or collisions when on the move?

What Insurance does a Mobile Food Van actually need?

Each mobile food van, food truck or coffee cart is different, however there are some standard risks that can be covered by different types of insurance. This includes:
  • Public Liability Insurance for risks to customers, suppliers and the public, eg. slips, trips, falls and burns
  • Product Liability Insurance for risks arising from your product. Eg. food poisoning, foreign objects in your food
  • Commercial Vehicle Insurance for your truck, van or cart. This needs to include coverage for your fit out and attachments such as refrigeration, cooking equipment, generators and signage.
  • Management Liability Insurance to cover claims by employees
  • Income protection insurance in the case that a personal accident or illness means you can’t work
  • Fire coverage
  • Theft coverage
  • Workers Compensation Insurance
  • Business Interruption. If your mobile food van is unable to be deployed, your business is unable to function.

What other insurance should I consider for my mobile food van business?

Many mobile food van businesses might require an element of conducting your business in the home. This might include food preparation, food refrigeration, storage of perishable and non perishable food or other items, business administration and more.
Many mobile food van businesses might require an element of conducting your business in the home. This might include food preparation, food refrigeration, storage of perishable and non perishable food or other items, business administration and more.

Where this is the case, specific insurance is required to cover your business activities in the home. You may need to consider the following insurance in that case:
  • Home and contents insurance that allows for business activities
  • Property damage
  • Portable and Valuable Items Insurance

What Level of Cover Do I Need for my Mobile Food Van Business?

Your level of coverage will depend on things like what type of food you serve and what activities you undertake within the van.

Food trucks selling beverages and prepackaged food only will require a different level of cover to food trucks that prepare and heat food on site using equipment such as burners and deep fryers. Different risks are also associated if you are licensed to serve alcohol.

If you have multiple vans or trucks you will also require different coverage for your fleet than a single van or truck.

The level of fit out of your truck will also impact on the level of cover you need for your mobile food van business. Fitting out food trucks can be an expensive endeavour. With your truck on the move, the risk to your vehicle and equipment in case of an accident could leave you in financial distress if your coverage isn’t adequate to replace your specialised equipment or modify a new vehicle if your existing vehicle is written off.

How can I get the best insurance cover for my Mobile Food Van?

Insuring a mobile food van is not simple. That’s why engaging an insurance broker with experience providing insurance coverage for mobile food and beverage businesses is a critical part of your business planning. At Grace Insurance we know what risks you face and the best way to tailor an insurance package that gives you the cover that you need. The right insurance coverage will see you navigate the unexpected events that will inevitably come up and be able to keep turning up to new places and doing what you love.

General Advice Warning: This advice is general and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether the advice is appropriate for you and your personal circumstances. Before you make any decision about whether to acquire a certain product, you should obtain and read the relevant product disclosure statement.

All information above has been provided by the author.

Aimee Henderson, Grace Insurance, ABN 63 133 156 742, AFSL 233750

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