MiVT: Global Village Foods

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WINDSOR, Vermont (WCAX) – A couple accustomed to serving traditional African cuisine in Vermont took on a new challenge in the Upper Valley.

“Everyone loves great food, so this is our success,” said Damaris Hall.

If you recognize Damaris and her husband Mel Hall, it’s because they’ve run a very popular restaurant in White River Junction for years – Tastes of Africa Karibu Tule.

Now they are embarking on another adventure – Global Village Foods.

“We’re not that fancy, it’s just really good food. Simple and delicious and really tasty, ”said Mel.

These meals are a fresh Vermont product that you can find in the freezer aisle or in the prepared foods section, free of the top eight allergens and sesame free.

This family business’s offerings stem from their son’s allergies and the hope that others can enjoy foods they know are safe.

“Everything we do, we freeze it. Whether it’s a bulk stew or a ready-to-eat meal, we freeze it immediately because we have no additives, no preservatives, ”Mel said.

“Our food just comes, it’s what it is. It’s food. We cook it, I mean if it’s chickpeas, we get the dried beans, we soak them, we cook them, we put in the spices. We actually get spices and we roast them and we grind them, ”Damaris said.

For Damaris, a training chef from Kenya, these are meals close to his African roots.

The love and care they put into their food has taken them to 42 Whole Foods stores in the Northeast and nearly 70 health food co-ops across New England.

An increase in popularity calls for an increase in space. So they plan to expand to a new kitchen in Quechee.

“What we could do here, our volume increased so much that we are playing Rubik’s cube with the freezer. We just don’t have enough space. So the new space we’re heading into is about three times the size. I think we have about four times the capacity of the freezer, ”Mel said.

While their fresh ingredients have earned them top food awards, they credit the people of Vermont with unwavering support.

“We are very grateful that people love the food, but at the same time, we also have good flavors. And I think what customers appreciate the most is that we have clean ingredients, these are products they can pronounce and it’s just great food, ”Damaris said.

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