Danielle Schwab has always had an interest in farming practices, sustainability and food. Her background in global trade and supply chains led to her connecting the dots on how the food we eat not only has a direct effect on our personal health, but also on the health of the environment and communities around us
Her passion in this area led to the creation of the excellent Illuminate Supply Chains blog which shines a light on our broken food system and what we need to do to fix it.
When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Danielle became concerned about all of the local food that was no longer going to restaurants. In addition to the excess supply of local food, people in her hometown of Maplewood, NJ were going to need fresh food that they could get safely and reliably.
So she started Illuminate Food.
Illuminate Food delivers farm boxes containing food sourced from the local farms around them. The boxes contain around 6-8 seasonal veggies and fruit, milk, eggs, yogurt or cheese, 1-2 specialty goods and fresh bread. They also include recipes that use that week's ingredients, and access to a community where customers can share recipes and tips. You can see some mouth-watering examples of their previous boxes here.
Not only does Illuminate Food source food from local farms, but they also partner with local makers and restaurants to support their businesses as well. For example, including sauces, cheeses, or baked goods from local producers.
Illuminate Food boxes are delivered weekly, by an in-house team of drivers using optimized delivery routes created by EasyRoutes.
EasyRoutes is a powerful local delivery management app for Shopify that makes it simple to plan and share delivery routes. EasyRoutes is seamlessly integrated with Shopify, the e-commerce platform Illuminate Food uses, so as soon as the app is open, their orders are there, ready to be routed.
“Before EasyRoutes, our process was extremely manual and tedious. Because of the customization aspect of our product, a single mistake would affect every other order proceeding it,” says Joe Ventricelli, Operations Manager for Illuminate Food.
Illuminate Food currently delivers farm boxes to areas of New Jersey and are constantly expanding their delivery area as their business grows. EasyRoutes makes expansion easy as it allows the user to create multiple routes from a set of orders in one click. Expanding to new areas is as simple as hiring an additional driver, adding another route, and sharing a link to it. EasyRoutes will optimize the stops, provide a map, inventory, and a Driver View which lets the driver navigate stop-by-stop and update order statuses from the road.
“Now with EasyRoutes, the process of routing and checking our orders is intuitive and streamlined.”
The modern food system has been built at the expense of our communities, environment and health. There is momentum growing around sustainable farming practices and as consumers, we can shift our choices to support these practices and the farmers paving the way. Ordering a farm box from Illuminate Food goes a long way to doing just that.
Learn more at https://www.illuminate-food.com