San Francisco-based vegan catering company The Vegan Hood Chefs is aiming to fight food injustice and social inequality by providing healthier food alternatives to Black communities in ways that reflect their culture. Founded by best friends Ronnishia Johnson and Rheema Calloway, The Vegan Hood Chefs provide catering, cooking classes, and personal chef services. Currently, they are providing weekly meal delivery services on Sundays, featuring dishes such as lemon basil eggplant, vegan chicken alfredo, and jambalaya. The company also offers a hip-hop themed fresh juice line and detox kits.
“It wasn’t until we started to look at food from a social justice lens that we learned that the food choices and health issues of our community were directly linked to the lack of access and education,” Johnson told VegNews. “As we started to change our diets we saw the impact on our family and communities. We learned that most fast-food companies target particularly low-income Black and Brown people. Our goal was to create a food business that would also target Black and Brown people with healthier alternatives and language that was uplifting and reflective of our culture to thrive.”
The Vegan Hood Chefs are currently hosting a crowdfunding campaign so they can purchase a food truck, which will allow them to expand business operations and serve more communities throughout the Bay Area. Because of COVID-19, the duo has not been able to work out of their regular pop-up kitchen spaces. “The food truck would be an investment in our sustainability and revolutionize how we think about dining, which is bringing food directly to the communities that need it most,” Johnson said.