Front Porch Pantry Delivers Fresh Meals from a 26,000-Square-Foot Food Production Facility
Front Porch Pantry was a relatively unknown contender in the prepared meal delivery business when it launched in 2016 from a small deli kitchen at the back of an Addison liquor store. The Dallas-based company now competes with the likes of Freshly and Factor and ships over 50,000 meals a month across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana.
Founder and Managing Partner Michaelann Dykes claimed her stake in the $10.29 billion global industry with a mission to help busy people eat healthy by delivering tasty home-cooked meals to their doorstep. She began by assembling a cookbook of ‘family favorite’ recipes and started testing her meals.
“The first deli kitchen was fine for making sure my recipes could be precooked from fresh ingredients and reheated without compromise,” says Dykes. Front Porch Pantry initially had two to three customers a week and quickly expanded to a large customer base in the Dallas area. Dykes says the company has an 88% loyalty rate today.
As the menu options for Front Porch Pantry grew, so did the need for more sophisticated real estate. Within the first year, Dykes sought assistance from Tanja McAleavey of Younger Partners who located a commercial gluten-free kitchen with accommodations that were prime for clean cooking. The new facility came with a space expansion option and gave Front Porch Pantry the edge it needed to accelerate in an industry experiencing compound annual growth rate of 13.5%.
In 2019, McAleavey teamed with Jerry Averyt of Younger Partners to find an even larger floor plate that could further scale with company progress. Front Porch Pantry purchased a former office warehouse located at 4600 McEwen Road in Farmers Branch and the pandemic struck during finish-out. Supply chain issues stalled renovations, affecting everything from commercial stoves and plumbing, to build-out on the office and walk-up retail areas. This happened just as Front Porch Pantry’s business, and the prepared meal delivery industry, was skyrocketing.
“No one could have predicted a pandemic that would astronomically affect the industry. Everyone was searching for great meal delivery options, and Front Porch Pantry had them,” says Dykes. “We had difficulty getting many necessary ingredients but with our extensive catalog of recipes, we were able to write and modify recipes according to what was available.”
The doors opened at the new facility in September 2021 and momentum remains strong for Front Porch Pantry. Dykes expects to escalate eight times the current volume as the business takes a national focus.
“Our online ratings speak for themselves. Even customers who love to cook are busy. We give them great taste, great value, and the added convenience of having fully cooked dinners delivered right to the front porch. We deliver in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas and look forward to expanding nationwide,” says Dykes.