Potato Potato Mobile Foods started as a joke between friends. Kevin Johnson, Owner/Operator/Emperor of Potatoes knew that poutine (the mobile food’s specialty), was popular in Canada but not the United States, and mostly unknown in Colorado. It was then; Kevin thought that an “International House of Poutine” style concept would be both successful and unique in the Colorado market. Kevin visited the SBDC to help make his idea a reality. “SBDC counseling has helped me by provided me with an overview of the regulatory parameters and requirements of opening a retail food establishment” said Kevin.
Opening a mobile food restaurant has had its challenges including mechanical breakdowns, negotiating red tape, learning to be as self-reliant as possible, cash flow and not to mention the physical and mental fatigue. Kevin has been able to overcome the challenges by focusing on each individual moment and the task at hand. “It’s important to not get overwhelmed by circumstances outside of your control.” Kevin brought developed service skills and both interpersonal and business correspondence excellence to his small business ownership through prior work experience and college education.
Potato Potato is different from any other mobile food truck. The food truck focuses on just one ingredient while exploring the possibilities of food while using that one ingredient – the potato of course! The potato gives Potato Potato a broad but confining palette within which Kevin gets to create. Since the food truck’s opening on March 1, 2014, Potato Potato has won several awards including: Two “Gold” awards in the Best Food Truck category (Colorado Springs Independent, Best of 2014 & 2015) and one “Silver” award for Food Truck in the Colorado Springs Gazette’s annual Best of the springs readers’ poll. Potato Potato hopes to continue work on creating sustainable business that is less susceptible to the negative seasonal impacts on revenue. The hope is to find a permanent “brick and mortar” location to add to the mobile business and develop products for wholesale distribution. Additionally, Potato Potato is planning to revisit their initial business giving plan. In the first year of operation, Kevin donated 5 – 10% of profits to a non-profit organization in the Pikes Peak Region.