Burgerville's new food cart – Nomad

Burgerville's Nomad Foodcart

Burgerville's Nomad Foodcart

If you had any questions about the huge impact that food carts have had on food services in Portland, look no further than Burgerville's new food cart "Nomad".

A rough economy combined with an explosive growth in food carts in Portland has motivated one of the Northwest's biggest chains to jump in the mix in a 'if you can't beat them, then join them' move.   It's not only a significant endorsement to Portland's food cart scene, but a recognition that  both the physics and the economics of running a restaurant have changed.

The importance of Burgerville's move is important beyond the fact that they are trying to keep up with the changing landscape. Burgerville CEO Jeff Harvey seems to understand the potential for using the food cart to expand his business in a way that wasn't fiscally viable before.  Harvey plans to use Nomad to test out new markets, serve markets where a full restaurant isn't economically viable and extend their brand into places they haven't been able to reach before.

The real question to be answered though:  is the boom in food carts a function of the bad economy or do they represent a real and fundamental change in the way people get food? It'll be interesting to see how Nomad fairs and if it becomes central to Burgerville's long terms strategy or just a tool they use to weather the storm of the great recession.

Here's our interview with Jeff Harvey CEO of Burgerville:

For more information on Nomad and Portland's food cart scene:

Geoff Kleinman

2 Comments

  1. I think that the food cart scene is awesome. I feel that the land gets used more efficiently as there are many restaurants occupying a small space, and good use of space is ecological. I also feel that it is a help to the economy as there are few taxes on the food carts allowing people the ability to see their dream of owning their own restaurants without the same business costs associated with a physical location. The economy is also helped out because these food carts are affordable to the people who are eating there, I can get a better tasting, healthier meal that I enjoy from the Whole Bowl for the same cost as getting an unhealthy meal from a chain fast food restaurant.

    -Tyler

  2. Hello!
    We are having an Baseball Inaguration at Lincoln High School on May 16 for the "new" HITTING CAGE. There will be a Barbeque of which the $$ will go towards this baseball equipment.
    Would like to know more about the NOMAD- cost? We are requesting a donation "veggie burgers?" Would that me possible? Of course, we would advertise- book, posters etc.

    Thanks! cynthia

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