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Cary restaurant helps launch area food hub

Wake County is getting its first community food hub starting this weekend.

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Get a look inside ko-an before it opens
Kathy Hanrahan, Out
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CARY, N.C. — Wake County is getting its first community food hub starting this weekend.
Dubbed the ko.mmunity hub because it is based at kō•än in Cary, the market will offer take-and-heat family meal kits, curated artisanal boxes and grocery items.

“As restaurants closed their dining rooms six weeks ago, the food supply chain began to fall apart, and local businesses’ income vanished overnight,” kō•än chef Drew Smith said. “The food supply chain is breaking, so we’re creating a new one."

Not long after the coronavirus closure, kō•än pivoted to become a one-stop grocery. This new hub will allow kō•än and other local businesses a place to feature their goods or meals with contact-less curbside pick-up and delivery.
​​​​​​​The ko.mmunity hub was inspired by Carrboro United, which serves the Carrboro area. The ko.mmunity hub will function in a similar way to Carrboro United, where customers can place orders online for pick-up on a specific day.
The first ko.mmunity hub day will be Saturday from noon to 8 p.m. at kō•än, 2800 Renaissance Park Place in Cary. Orders need to be placed in advance online by 3 p.m. Thursday. Customers will receive their orders in a drive-thru setup, where their orders are placed in their trunks.

Family meal options and participating chefs will change each week. This week's option include a Mother's Day meal box from kō•än, Whiskey Kitchen's take-and-heat chicken and broccoli casserole, Stir's white cheddar mac-and-cheese with grilled chicken and other items.

The hub also has a "feed your neighbor" tab, which allows customers to support nonprofits. The hub currently has a partnership with A Place at the Table, which allows customers to donate a full meal, coffee or specific monetary amount. Customers can also make a donation to the other hub partner – Carroll's Kitchen, which supplies employment for women recovering from crisis.

The hub hopes to expand to include pop-ups to help completely shutdown restaurants bring in income, plus using the platform to launch new local products.


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