JANUARY 18, 2017: In recognition of our work with Night Market Philadelphia and overall efforts to grow and better the mobile food business community, The Food Trust was presented with the Leadership and Advocacy Award by the Philly Mobile Food Association (PMFA).
Night Market Philadelphia has been around since 2010 and has grown leaps and bounds to host the most awaited street food festivals during the summer. It has become an institution that not only celebrates good food but also enlivens neighborhoods and empowers local entrepreneurs, The Food Trust can't wait to see what it will accomplish in the years to come.
5-Year Impact Report: Night Market Philadelphia
In 2010, The Food Trust created Night Market Philadelphia to bring communities together and celebrate the joy of food.
Today, Night Market isn’t just a busy night for food truck vendors—it’s an opportunity for local entrepreneurs to grow their businesses and build a lasting customer base. It isn’t just one evening of celebrating a neighborhood—it’s a catalyst for sustained community engagement. It isn’t just a popular event—it’s a creator of jobs, tax revenue and real economic growth.
Read the rest of the report here.
The Healthy Food Truck Initiative is a food truck certification program that allows food trucks to prove that they are “healthy” and gain recognition for doing so. ...
“We don’t think every food truck needs to be a salad truck,” Chen said. “But by certain small changes we can encourage them to make through the program, we can provide more healthy options at these really accessible, really convenient places throughout Philadelphia.”
Several collaborations have gotten the initiative this far, including those with Penn’s Student Health Service and the Wharton Social Impact Initiative. WSII is supporting the student group through its Impact Certification program, which offers “funding, guidance and light oversight,” said Stephanie Kim, associate director of community strategy for WSII.
But it’s The Food Trust that’s helping HFTI reach trucks beyond Penn’s campus.
The partnership came about by chance about two years ago, said Diana Minkus, senior associate for The Food Trust’s Night Market food truck program. A colleague found a HFTI flyer on Penn’s campus and passed it on to Minkus, who recognized that the initiative shared a mission with The Food Trust — to improve public access to healthy food.
Read more here.
Many American towns put the "Closed" sign up by 6 p.m. But night markets are drawing people out in Minnesota, Oklahoma and Virginia, with food, art and music from the local community.
The model for the nocturnal markets is the Asian night market, where people eat, shop and socialize and tourists discover delicacies like live scorpions and roasted sea horse until the wee hours of the morning.
Night Market Philadelphia, a roving festival, attracts 25,000 people to diverse city neighborhoods after dark. Vendors offer tastes of the Philadelphia food scene, with salsa dancing and body painting on the side. The market has brought new vitality and revenue to the city, says market director Diana Minkus.
Read more here.
Cooking Light Magazine
“[Headhouse Farmers Market] is a very well-managed market with a great balance of truly committed vendors: meats, sustainable fish, fresh produce, coffee. I can just about fully live off that market and just buy toothpaste somewhere else.” —Chef Aimee Olexy, Talula’s Garden, Philadelphia, PA
Women's Health Magazine
According to the USDA, an estimated total of 13.6 million Americans live in areas that are considered food deserts, and a recent study that examined social media posts about food suggests that a person’s proximity to a healthy food store does impact the healthiness of their meals—the researchers found that only 33 percent of posts from people in food deserts mention fruits and vegetables, compared with 48 percent of posts from people in non-food deserts.
“The challenges for families that lack access to healthy food are vast,” Gabriella Mora, a Senior Associate in Policy and Government Affairs at The Food Trust, tells WomensHealthMag.com. “Imagine a scenario where a single, working mom with young children and no car is having to take two buses and a train and travel an hour each way just to get to the closest grocery store. That’s actually a pretty common scenario, and that inequity creates a lot of barriers to making healthy food choices, since it’s likely much simpler to get to something that’s closer by, but an unhealthy food choice.”
“For a lot of kids,” she adds, “it’s way easier to get a grape soda than a handful of grapes, or an orange soda than an actual orange.”
The Food Trust, which was founded in Philadelphia in 1992, specializes in bringing healthy food access to underserved populations throughout the country. Mora works as a policy advocate for the Healthy Food Financing Initiative, which provides financial incentives for businesses to open in healthy food stores in underserved areas, and is a key component of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign, which aims to lower childhood obesity rates.
Read more here.
Blog post from Rhea May, Fairmount Ventures
The Food Trust has worked tirelessly over the past twenty years to ensure access to healthy and affordable food for everyone. In Philadelphia, where food deserts are depressingly common and even part of our city was named the second hungriest district in the nation in 2010, assuring access to this basic human necessity can be grim work indeed. But rather than merely being a mouthpiece to these depressing statistics or shaming the public into taking action against this atrocity, The Food Trust takes a different approach to engaging the public. As anyone who’s been to Night Market can attest, they make food a celebration – and they make sure that everyone’s in on the party.
U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) announced that following his effort, Philadelphia’s Food Trust has been awarded a $150,000 grant that will allow the successful Night Markets food truck events to continue. The Night Markets have brought food trucks to neighborhoods across Philadelphia- showcasing the city’s entrepreneurs and stimulating economic activity in local communities. With the food truck industry growing in the city, the Night Markets have had an $11 million impact on the city’s economy.
From the Philadelphia Business Journal:
"It looks like more Night Markets are on the horizon in the city as the Department of Commerce announced that a series of grants were awarded in support of the Food Trust Night Markets as well as the commercial corridor enhancement in Philadelphia."
From Fox 29
The Food Trust Night Market staff and Old City Night Market vendor, Prime Stache are interviewed about Old City Night Market.
From Fox 29
The Night Market Outdoor Street Festival kicked off in Old City on Thursday.
Dozens of vendors are gearing up for a celebration of food and music.
The festival showcases the city’s diverse neighborhoods and food by partnering with local restaurants, food trucks, regional musicians and dynamic artists.
The Night Market will be held on four Thursday evenings, in four different neighborhoods.
After the Old City Market on Thursday, May 15th the festival continues with Night Markets in West Oak Lane on June 19, on Lancaster Avenue on August 21 and back in Chinatown on October 2.
"The arrival of warm weather in Philadelphia means the start of 'Night Market'
It's a great summer tradition, and the first of this year's events took place in Old City. They call it 'the roving street food festival,' and there was plenty of food to choose from."
WHYY produced two videos highlighting Night Market Philadelphia, a seasonal, roving event that showcases the local food truck scene, supports local entrepreneurship, and is "revitalizing Philadelphia's communities." Check out the videos here
Night markets are a staple in many Asian countries — for centuries locals have used them to shop for items, eat cheaply, and entertain themselves in one spot. Today, countries and communities around the world are reinventing the night market, offering everything from traditional Asian street foods to globally-influenced cuisine.