Announcing the 15 Connecticut Ventures in the Food Business Accelerator

5 min readNov 8, 2018

The Food Business Accelerator is a partnership between CitySeed and Collab.

The Food Business Accelerator by CitySeed and Collab is a statewide accelerator for Connecticut early-stage food entrepreneurs.

The aim of the Food Business Accelerator is to remove barriers to food entrepreneurship across the state of Connecticut through training, network-building, and access to resources.

In the end, the goal is to create economic opportunity for all, increase leadership by people-of-color and immigrant food entrepreneurs, and strengthen our local food system by linking rising food entrepreneurs and farmers.

Earlier this Fall, we released the Food Business Accelerator. We received 41 applications from over 100 entrepreneurs. After a review process, 15 ventures were selected for this cohort of the Food Business Accelerator.

And now, we’re proud to introduce you to the 15 ventures in the Food Business Accelerator 2018 cohort:

Dave’s Angry Sauce
Founder: David Bonet

A line of vinegar-based hot sauces with different flavors and levels of heat made with mostly organic, natural ingredients.

Dream Puffs
Founders: Keila, Sheariah and Adaiah Stevens

A line of puffs with a variety of flavors — some vegan, some savory, some sweet — all with a healthy twist.

Empanada Food Cart
Founder: Eduardo Juan Delara-Alarcon

A food cart providing gourmet empanadas — from seasonal lobster rolls empanadas in the summer or pumpkin in the fall.

Elm City Roaster & Bistro
Founders: Laura Jimenez, William Ruiz

A rustic café bistro delivering freshly roasted artisan coffee, indulgent breakfast dishes, and more. The goal is to be a safe place of inclusion where people of all kinds can come together.

An African Diaspora Market in Bridgeport, CT
Founders: Faith Lorde, Shaquille Semoy, Malcolm Welfare

A brick and mortar food market that celebrates African Diaspora food heritage and whole body products for wellness. The market will encourage opportunities for people of color as a core value.

Fatema’s Kitchen
Founders: Fatema AlHelo, Abdullah Zatar

A Syrian food truck serving healthy, delicious, and affordable meze and mana’eesh, entrees like fried Kebbeh, and desserts like qatayef and baklava.

For the Love of Food
Founder: Debra Halsted

A product line of Superfood Energy Balls — a chewy, bite-sized treat sweetened from dried fruits with a surprise pop of flavor from the combination of healthy, delicious ingredients.

In Good Faith
Founders: Faith Kim, Logan Skinner

A product line of fresh noodles made with local eggs and flour — and tons of love. These noodles will be more accessible for those in the New Haven area.

Founders: Kevin McGuire, Seth Wallace

A restaurant offering innovative and accessible Filipino food — affording customers the ability to enjoy food and history at the same time.

Kina’s Kitchen
Founder: Kaina Mondesir

A Haitian food truck, serving delicious Haitian twists on American dishes and American twists on Haitian dishes using seasonal, local ingredients.

Parvine’s Place
Founder: Parvine Toorawa

Homemade and versatile chutneys with flavors like date, jalapeno, coconut, lemon, Mauritian vegetable, and more.

Royal Vegan
Founders: Marvis Brown, Rickie Miller

A vegan food truck with a signature meat replacement — fried oyster mushrooms that are satisfying, delicious, and versatile.

Founders: Eric Rey and Alejandro Pabon-Rey

A “soup-scription” service delivering warm, healing, homemade soups to the New Haven area.

A Pupuseria Co-op from Unidad Latina en Acción
Founders: Vanesa Suarez, Ana Benitez, Elsa Calle, Hugo Diaz, Hazel Mencos, Erick Lopez

A worker-owned cooperative food truck serving Salvadorian pupusas (thick stuffed corn tortillas).

Vegan Ahava
Founder: Poreyah Benton

A food truck serving delicious, comforting vegan soul food.




A community-driven accelerator for Connecticut entrepreneurs ✨