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Chirba Chirba’s stolen food truck was found quickly, but losses exceed $10k

Food Truck Review: Chirba Chirba will make you want to ‘Eat! Eat!’

Chirba Chirba Dumpling food truck owner Nate Adams shares favorites from the menu
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Chirba Chirba Dumpling food truck owner Nate Adams shares favorites from the menu

Chirba Chirba’s bright yellow food truck was stolen early Sunday morning, but didn’t stay missing for long.

Owner Nate Adams said the truck was spotted in east Durham later that morning, about three hours after the popular dumpling maker posted a social media plea to be on the lookout.

But while the truck was recovered, Adams said losses likely surpass $10,000. The truck was ransacked, Adams said. A generator, propane tanks, collers and cables were stolen, he said. As a result, Chirba Chirba had to skip a planned food truck rodeo in Virginia.

“It’s a little concerning, because food trucks are beginning to be targeted,” Adams said. “I want other food truckers to know so they can be extra careful.”

A GoFundMe campaign was set up to help the truck recover. While insurance covers some of the losses, the money will be used for loss of inventory, revenue and paying employees, according to the GoFundMe page. By Monday afternoon, almost $2,000 of the $8,000 goal had been raised.

The Durham Police Department said the case is under investigation.

The Durham Police Department said the Chirba Chirba truck was reported stolen around 8:45 a.m. Sunday. The Chirba Chirba truck had been parked inside a locked fence, which requires a code to get in. Adams said security footage showed someone cutting through a back gate.

“My sense is, if he didn’t have information ahead of time, he at least had been casing the area,” Adams said.

Adams said a former employee called him about 11 a.m. after seeing the truck in the Dollar General Parking lot off of Miami Boulevard in east Durham.

“He saw it sitting there,” Adams said. “It’s not easy to hide that thing.”

Adams has operated Chirba Chirba for eight years, growing it into one of the Triangle’s most popular food trucks. He said the company had two trucks, but sold one recently when his family had their second child.

Chirba Chirba was back in business by lunch Monday. Adams said the truck was scrubbed and stocked Sunday night and that the food truck community and Chirba Chirba fans helped get it back on the road.

Adams’ social media post Sunday reporting the stolen truck was shared dozens of times within the first 10 minutes. By the time it was found, it had been shared hundreds of times.

“Honestly we’re absolutely blown away from the response on social media,” Adams said. “It was immediate. Other food truckers have been offering me help. We only missed one booking, the day the truck was missing.

“That’s really a testament to the food truck community we have here,” he said. “We really look out for each other. And so do our fans, there’s been an outpouring of love and support. I really want to say thank you to all of them.”

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