LA is a city better known for valet parking than for bike delivery. But with gas prices nearly hitting $4 a gallon and sustainability becoming a mainstream ideal, LA is starting to show signs of a cultural shift. People have always enjoyed avoiding the hassle of driving and parking by having food delivered. And thanks to the FreshFoodBike guy, now it can be done sustainably.
FreshFoodBike guy, aka Tohid Naeem, for a $50 order or more from the Whole Foods at 3rd and Fairfax (which isn’t difficult to spend at Whole Foods) will select products and produce for you based on your diet and mood or pick up whatever order you specify. FreshFoodBike goes beyond the standard ‘order and deliver’ model, by offering concierge services; Tohid delivers hand-picks items he thinks you might like.
Tohid then delivers the groceries via custom-designed electric bicycles that are charged using Whole Foods Market’s solar panel array. Fresh Food Bike is sponsored by iZipStore, an electric bike retailer in Venice, CA. One advantage that Fresh Food Bike has over other delivery methods, is that the bike can bring a freshly prepared picnic basket to you at Rancho Park, or to the Hollywood Bowl before a concert, or to the lawn of Hollywood Forever before one of their outdoor movie screenings.
In addition to bringing food to unique locations, Fresh Food Bike also brings groceries in reusable, insulated bags, provided by Burley, and stocked in clients’ homes or office kitchens and pantries, minimizing waste and the need for paper or plastic bags.
Whole Foods, as a company, isn’t new to the bike delivery scene. The original store in Austin, Texas has been offering a bike delivery service since 2009. Whole Foods is also currently considering using bike deliveries in two of its Bay Area stores. Whole Foods is looking at a cargo bike in these stores, as the cargo bike has a longer and heavier steel frame, and is designed to carry 400 pounds of weight.
For those who live in Long Beach, and prefer Trader Joe’s, if you ride your bike to the Trader Joe’s on Atlantic Avenue on Saturdays, between 11am and 5pm, an experienced bicyclist will ride with you and carry your groceries to your home in the new Bixby Knolls Cargo Bike. The best part of this service is it is free to everyone within a 1-mile radius of Trader Joe’s. The downside is you do have to bike and pick out your own groceries.
For customers using any of these different delivery services, bike delivery helps to raise awareness about the carbon footprint that comes just with bringing your groceries home.
But what makes Fresh Food Bike special and worth the extra money is Tohid. Tohid has excellent taste and a great eye. If I was throwing a holiday party in LA, I would book his services immediately!