Diverse, locally owned food start-ups make the menus at Harvard, UMass, and BC

January 28, 2020

Margarita Carreto makes her mole sauces from scratch, combining over 20 ingredients to create its earthy flavor. She and her son have labored for years to grow their business, Mr Tamole, selling tamales at farmers’ markets and specialty stores. But breaking into the big time — finding a spot on the shelves at Whole Foods or other area grocery stores — has proved elusive.

Then this summer CommonWealth Kitchen, the Dorchester nonprofit where she rents kitchen space, found her a potential new customer: Harvard University. After sampling her red rice and mole with chicken in the room where John F. Kennedy once dined, the university’s staff ordered 100 gallons of her family’s signature sauce.

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