Food insecurity is a major problem in many urban neighborhoods. Lower-income families often rely on small convenience stores as their primary source of groceries. But these corner stores tend to offer few, if any, fresh fruits and vegetables because they lack viable options for sourcing fresh produce. Store owners often buy produce at grocery stores, then resell it at higher prices. That takes time and money, and results in second-hand produce for sale at high prices in a challenging sales environment.
BrightSide was founded in 2014 as a way to improve access to fresh food by helping corner stores stock produce on their shelves. Our co-founders are Adam Pruitt and Deedee Fuller, two community youth who wanted to make a difference in their community, and Adam Kay, Professor of Biology at the University of St. Thomas. BrightSide has run continually since then, with the support of many volunteers, community employees, college students, and a small but dedicated staff.