Looking back, moving forward – Our COVID Response

Blog / Looking back, moving forward – Our COVID Response

In the 100 days since the start of the COVID-19 crisis in Boston, About Fresh has turned our initial scrappy response into a sophisticated and scalable system that’s getting more food to the households that need it than we have ever delivered before.

How we got here

We designed a door-to-door delivery system

-We scaled last-mile delivery operations by connecting our Fresh Connect platform to a delivery technology platform. This enabled us to enroll high-need households through health systems, community partners, and the City of Boston to ensure more than 5,000 households a week were getting fresh, healthy food at the right address at the right time. 

Our partners stepped up and worked fast

-We partnered with the City of Boston to develop a shared enrollment system for households at the highest risk for the virus.

-Our wholesale food distributor, Katsiroubas Bros, stood up the Fresh Box sourcing and packing operation. 

-Brigham Health enrolled patients through COVID-19 testing sites to enable them to stay home and limit spread. 

-After hearing that we were in need of last-mile delivery support, CEO of Gourmet Caterers, Bob Wiggins offered to leverage the Payroll Protection Program funds they had received to keep his staff employed making Fresh Box deliveries. 

-And more than 300 people from Boston communities stepped up and collectively volunteered more than 2,300 hours to support door-to-door Fresh Box deliveries!

We redesigned the Fresh Truck mobile market model

-Two-weeks after statewide COVID-19 lockdown went into effect, the Fresh Truck team, headed up by Megan Huang, launched our Fresh Truck Open Air Mobile Markets across seven Boston sites. 

-Over three-months of operating Open Air markets, we have processed more than 2,800 transactions, 90% of which were SNAP.

Moving Forward

The work is not over. COVID-19 remains a threat across the city while the economic crisis continues to hit hard. Our low-income communities of color will be hit hardest on both fronts. Our programs are built to last and we will continue to adapt to new needs and new circumstances. 

Here’s what our team is doing next:

Expanding ‘Open Air’ Fresh Truck markets – As restrictions begin to lift we are working with our neighborhood partners to launch additional market sites for shoppers to use their SNAP and P-EBT funds on food. We are working to add 10 additional market sites to the schedule before the end of the year. 

Healthcare system integration – Food insecurity continues to be a strategic priority for health systems. We are accelerating the development of our Fresh Connect platform to meet the needs of health systems and their patients with upgraded features and a streamlined patient enrollment process.

Fresh Connect delivery integration – COVID-19 has expedited the need for Fresh Connect to be integrated into commercial grocery delivery systems. The Fresh Connect team has launched the exploration that will make it possible for Fresh Connect shoppers to order grocery delivery online using their Fresh Connect card. 


Food security is a crucial part of public health emergency and economic crisis response. The ability to put food on the table can make all the difference in times of fear and uncertainty. We need your support to continue to build programs that will carry our communities through this pandemic right now and into the future. 

Blog / Looking back, moving forward – Our COVID Response

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