Municipal Licensing & Standards

Street Vending Review


The City of Toronto is undertaking a comprehensive review of the street food vending bylaws in the City of Toronto. Existing bylaws include:

The review will include in-depth research, analysis and extensive consultations on the street food vending experience in Toronto. It will also engage a wide variety of stakeholders, including food cart and food truck operators, local restaurants and businesses, and the general public.

The Street Food Working Group, which meets on a monthly basis, will play a key role in the review. The group includes representatives of the Toronto Street Food Vendors Association, the Ontario Food Trucks Association, the Ontario Restaurant, Hotel and Motel Association (ORHMA), the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA), and staff from Toronto Public Health, Parks Forestry and Recreation, Economic Development and Culture, and Municipal Licensing and Standards.

As part of the review, the City facilitated a two-month Food Truck Program at City of Toronto park locations where both visibility and pedestrian traffic were high to assess the feasibility of an expanded street food experience in the city. The program ran from August to October 2013. During the program, food trucks were present at Allan Gardens, Canoe Landing, Roundhouse Park, Sherbourne Commons and Woodbine Park.

Data collected during the program has been used to inform the review and to help work toward the goal of creating a harmonized, city-wide street food vending bylaw that balances the interests of all stakeholders and encourages a vibrant street food experience. Recommendations related to improving street food vending for both food carts and trucks will be reported to the Licensing and Standards Committee in advance of the spring 2014 vending season.

Phases of the Review

The review will proceed in three phases:

  • Phase 1: Research and Analysis – July and August 2013
  • Phase 2: Stakeholder Consultations – September and October 2013
  • Phase 3: Final Report – November 2013 to January 2014

Phase 1: Research and Analysis
July and August 2013 
Staff will analyze existing by-laws and, in consultation with the Street Food Working Group, identify the key considerations and challenges associated with a harmonized street food vending bylaw in Toronto. Staff will research street food vending legislation in other Canadian and North American cities to understand where and how these considerations and challenges have been addressed.

Phase 2: Stakeholder consultations 
September and October 2013 
Based on the findings in the first phase of the review, staff will consult with various stakeholders to continue identifying issues associated with street food vending in Toronto and to explore potential solutions in the context of a harmonized street food vending bylaw. Staff will accept input through consultations, surveys, meetings, emails to , as well as written submissions.

Phase 3: Final report 
November 2013 to January 2014 
Based on the research and consultations, staff will develop and explore options for an expanded street food experience in Toronto, in the context of a harmonized street food vending bylaw. Staff will continue consulting with the Street Food Working Group in the development of these options and while completing the final report. The final report will be posted online and stakeholders and the public may depute at a Licensing and Standards Committee meeting, which is expected to be in the spring of 2014.


As part of the review, ML&S is engaging a variety of stakeholders for their feedback on industry practices, issues and possible solutions, both in consultation and by survey. A survey was conducted to obtain input which will be reviewed by staff as well as included and/or summarized in the final report.