In today’s blog we’ll share a very cool food cart we just designed and manufactured. We’ll also put on our point of purchase design hat and share our ideas for how the cart could be customized to change up the look and increase its utility. We were asked by Nongshim USA to make a food cart or what they call a “market cart” to display their noodle products in Korean supermarkets. Nongshim has a wide range of noodle and related food products that are very popular, particularly among Asian consumers. Nongshim wanted us to design and manufacture an authentic-looking cart that could hold a significant amount of product while also serving as an in-store attraction to draw in customers and promote the Nongshim brand. The pictures below show the cart we made.
We used birch plywood to create the basic cart structure and then added pine strapping to create a natural look. We cut the wheels on our CNC machine and built them to be functional so the cart could be wheeled around. We added a handle for aesthetics and to make it easy to push. We also built an overhead sign holder with a channel to hold a large interchangeable sign to promote the Nongshim brand. The cart could be used with or without the top sign structure. We stained the cart with a golden oak stain and then added 3-dimensional laser-cut acrylic letters for the Nongshim logo. On the two ends of the cart we added a laser-cut acrylic Korean symbol. We’re not sure what it says, but apparently it has significance to Korean shoppers.
We really like the way the cart turned out and think it will be a high-impact display at retail. Using this basic food cart concept, there are a number of ways it could be customized for related applications. For example, we think this cart would look really cool with reclaimed wood in place of the stained pine strapping. It would really give it a vintage look that could work in a lot of different settings. Alternatively, it would be interesting to use bamboo instead of the pine strapping to create a killer, eco-friendly fixture. We could also modify it by adding a door to take advantage of the storage space in the cart. To increase utility, the cart could be modified to be truly mobile. We built it to be capable of being moved around for cleaning, etc. However, it would be easy to change the wheel structure to enable it to be wheeled around for miles.
Furthermore, it would be easy to replace the overhead sign structure with a completely different, perhaps more upgraded look. It’s not hard to imagine an overhead wood structure with dimensional letters and LED lighting. Alternatively, adding an awning would give the cart a different look that might be even closer to a true “market cart.” Similarly, it would be easy to add a plastic liner to the bin to be able to offer cold beverages on ice or other items. Finally, it would be fairly simple to convert the cart from a 4-sided fixture to a 3-sided fixture by adding a back panel and pushing the cart against a wall. The back panel could incorporate wood shelves, hooks, signage, and other accessories. It would be very cool to add a large digital media player or menu board that could be embedded in the back panel.
This food cart project was fun to design, and it serves as a good illustration of our furniture-quality craftsmanship. It definitely got our wheels turning with respect to the many ways it could be modified to meet specific customer requirements.