Chicago-based startup KitcheNet, which earned third place in the 2016 John Edwardson, ’72, Social New Venture Challenge (SNVC), recently took home another award: a Polsky Accelerator Demo Day audience choice honor.

Run by Chicago Booth’s Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation and the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, the SNVC is the social impact track of the University of Chicago’s nationally ranked Edward L. Kaplan, ’71, New Venture Challenge.

The Rustandy Center recently sat down Trista Li, a current joint Chicago Booth and Harris School student and cofounder of KitcheNet, a social venture that aims to make fresh food affordable and accessible by delivering weekly grocery boxes to low-income insecure communities.

What problem does KitcheNet work to solve in society?

At KitcheNet, we believe eating fresh food is a basic human right. There are 15.6 million households, which can be categorized as food insecure or without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. KitcheNet provides weekly grocery boxes designed to meet a family’s basic and nutritional food needs. Fruits, vegetables, proteins, and curated recipes from local chefs come in every box, as well as optional spices, herbs, and starches. Using a hub-to-hub delivery model, KitcheNet allows parents to pick up their groceries from a centralized community hub, saving them time driving from store to store to compare prices. We want one community hub in every food-insecure neighborhood.

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