Black-owned food service company City Fresh Foods, based in the Boston community of Roxbury, has landed a $17 million contract with Boston Public Schools.
City Fresh, a family-owned business founded in 1994, will provide breakfast, lunch, after-school meals, fresh snacks and summer meals for almost 50,000 Boston public school students starting July 1.
“[This is a] long time coming,” co-founder and CEO Glynn Lloyd said at the press conference. “Twenty-eight years ago, City Fresh began around the corner on Dudley Street — a 1,200-square-foot kitchen with less than 10 employees delivering a couple of hundred meals a day. And look at City Fresh now. We produce and deliver thousands of meals every day to residents of the city of Boston, and we have a team of 160 locals.”
City Fresh has 80 total employees and generates $11.19 million in sales. It focuses on healthy foods from various cuisines, including American, Caribbean, Asian, Portuguese/Cape Verdean, as well as vegetarian. City Fresh feeds homemade meals to 2.5 million people annually, delivering to homebound seniors, schools, after-school programs, childcare centers and adult day centers in the Eastern Massachusetts area, according to its website.
“I’m so proud to partner with City Fresh to bring nutritious food to young people in our Boston public schools. And with this investment, we are leading by example, showing that it is possible to invest in local businesses that value workers, that strive and live racial equity, and still receive higher quality food,” said Boston mayor Michelle Wu at a press conference.
According to Wu, the City Fresh contract is the largest non-construction contract the city has awarded to a certified Black-owned business.
“We’re so proud that it is a local, Boston-based business,” Wu added. “City Fresh is Roxbury based, and a majority of their employees are Boston residents, meaning that the people feeding our communities are from our communities, and … the hard-earned taxpayer dollars that we are investing in this contract go right back into communities.”
Lloyd spoke of the growth of City Fresh.
“City Fresh is building a state-of-the-art institutional food service production plant in the heart of Roxbury to provide critical nutrition and flavor to even more children and families in the Greater Boston community for years to come,” Lloyd said.
Boston’s partnership with City Fresh Foods is part of the city’s Good Food Purchasing Program, whose aim is to align the city’s food procurement with “goals of racial equity, environmental sustainability, and local economic development,” Boston.com reported.
Lloyd, whose children attend Boston Public Schools, said City Fresh has always been community-oriented.
“The mission was to hire local and feed local, hire younger and serve the older community,” Lloyd said. “We were selected because we are from Boston, we had the best proposal, we know the city well, and we have a special connection to the community because we are a reflection of the community.”