With Mayor Andy Berke’s shelter at home order about to take effect, Chattanoogans are only able to obtain meals from trips to the grocery store or picking up food from restaurants. Like so many other food-based industries, Marco and Romana Biscarini’s “Vibrant Meals” has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. But perhaps not as much as some of their peers.
“We started with delivery first, and we didn’t even have our first retail till a couple of years ago,” said co-owner Marco Biscarini. “So before then, we were purely online and that was our only sales channel. So we developed our entire supply chain and operation around producing meals and delivering them to people’s homes.”
Vibrant Meals is focused on delivering healthy meals to their customers, with the restaurant’s menu drawing from Romana Biscarini’s past experience preparing special meals for athletes in Southern California. Customers can choose from items such as “Butternut Macaroni with Ricotta” and “Keto Barbacoa Brisket” on the online menu.
“When you purchase meals online and have them delivered, you pop them in the microwave or heat them up on the stovetop,” said Biscarini. “So they’re already cooked, and then we chill them and deliver them cold, and then you reheat them. Typically, customers order for the whole week when they order online, and they also have the option to come into our store and order anything we have in stock.”
Even though Vibrant Meals is not devastated by the pandemic, the Biscarinis still wish to assist businesses who have been. Marco Biscarini mentioned farmers and breweries as two that the business would like to help out during these tough times.
“We know farmers are struggling right now because there aren’t really any farmer’s markets going on right now. So we’re trying as hard as possible to put together a produce box. We want to do one that leverages local produce and one that sources local meats. That way we can get high-quality vegetables and meats to people in addition to our already-made meals.”
“We’ve also talked to a few breweries in town and we’re looking at how we can get their products delivered to their and our customers in the safest way possible. They’re limited in their direct-to-consumer reach because they don’t have the supply chain set up. So that’s an opportunity we have to continue to get their products in front of people.”
Mr. Biscarini said that there has been zero evidence that COVID-19 can be transmitted through food. For those who are concerned with the virus through the packaging, the owner vouched for the cleanliness of Vibrant Meals.
“We do all of our bagging and delivering with gloves that get swapped out often. We bleach and sanitize all of our bags,” said Marco Biscarini. “When someone orders something, that food gets put into one bag that has been handled by only one person, and that gets sealed and distributed by either delivery or curbside pickup.”
If one wants to look at the menu and place an order online, they can visit Vibrant Meals’ website at https://www.myvibrantmeals.com/ . If they want to give the company a call, they can call 497-1123. The store Is at 601 Cherokee Blvd.