Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Greyston Bakery: Baked with a Fresh Start

Do you ever bite in to a brownie and wonder what makes it so delicious? Perhaps it’s the cage-free eggs? Possibly it’s the perfect chocolate chip crunch? Maybe it’s made with love: real, genuine, wanna-hug-your-grandma love? I found the secret ingredient to Greyston Bakery’s desserts…they’re delightful because they’re baked with a fresh start.

I recently had the honor of hearing the President and CEO of Greyston Bakery, Mike Brady, speak at Whole Foods Market®’s Global Support offices. I walked away from his talk not only inspired by a company creating a better tomorrow, but also moved by their mission. I was so enthused that I had to share their story.

One of the most unique components to Greyston is their open-hiring policy that provides employees in Yonkers, New York, with a job and a new beginning regardless of past experiences. This not only promotes economic development and positive changes for individuals and families in the community but it also is catalyst for other social enterprises.

Founded in 1982 by a Zen Buddhist, Greyston Bakery has evolved their idea of open-hiring to a larger Foundation that supports affordable housing, HIV/AIDS health services, community gardens and a child care center, among many other services. Could this company get any better? Oh yes, they can!

Undoubtedly, Greyston gives back to their local community but last year they decided to go worldwide by teaming up with Whole Planet Foundation. Since their brownie in support of Whole Planet Foundation launched last May, Greyston has donated over $6,500 to help alleviate poverty through microcredit loans. During the recent five-week Whole Planet Foundation Prosperity Campaign, they raised $4,500 for microcredit loans, supplying a loan every 3 days!

In October I had the tremendous honor of meeting microcredit clients while traveling to Peru as a Whole Foods Market Team Member Volunteer. It is impossible to put in to words the genuine gratitude and pride I witnessed and  seeing the impact these loans funded by Whole Planet Foundation support will have on future generations. I have a comparable feeling after reading about Greyston’s bakers on a mission. Next time you are in your local Whole Foods Market bakery department and hunting for the perfect brownie, choose one from Greyston Bakery and you’ll be happy to know the life-changing impact it will have on others, worldwide.

Greyston Bakery products are available in our Northeast, North Atlantic, Mid Atlantic, Southwest, Rocky Mountain and Southern Pacific regions. Ask about them in the bakery department.

What other products do you love that also gives back to a greater cause?