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LA’s Taco Truck War: How Law Cooks Food Culture Contests
University of Miami Inter-American Law Review (2011)
  • Ernesto A. Hernandez-Lopez

This paper examines the Los Angeles “Taco Truck War” (2008-9), when the city of Los Angeles and LA county used parking regulations to restrict “loncheros,” i.e. “taco trucks.” It describes the legal doctrine used by courts to invalidate these local restrictions. The California Vehicle code makes local food truck regulations illegal. Decades of court decisions affirm this. The paper sheds light, legal and cultural, on food truck debates, which will surely expand nationwide. It examines: the cultural and business arguments for food truck regulations; food’s role in migrant, community, and national identities; Mexican food’s influence in California culture; and recent trends in food trucks such as Koggi BBQ.

  • food trucks,
  • local government,
  • food and law,
  • taco trucks
Publication Date
Citation Information
Ernesto A. Hernandez-Lopez, LA’s Taco Truck War: How Law Cooks Food Culture Contests, 43 U. Miami Inter-Am. L. Rev. 243 (2011): 233. Available at: