Locate Finger Lakes Business Journal

REAL EATS: Geneva meal delivery company moving to new building, teaming with GNC

A bigger bite for RealEats; Geneva meal delivery company moving to former Cheribundi building

Four years after it began with just a handful of workers in rented space at the Geneva Enterprise Development Center, meal delivery service RealEats is moving to bigger digs.

RealEatsDan Wise, founder and CEO of the company, which provides healthy, prepared meals in packages that can be on the plate in about six minutes, said RealEats will be moving out of the GEDC later this year and into leased space at the former Cheribundi manufacturing operation on Routes 5&20 in the town.

Cheribundi moved from Geneva to Michigan in 2020. The site was at one time a Tops grocery store.

“It really helped us to grow significantly,” Wise said of the state-sponsored competition for food and agriculture startups around the world. The competition, now in its third year, offers a $1 million grand prize, two $500,000 prizes and four $250,000 prizes. Winners must stay in the Grow-NY economic development regions (the Finger Lakes, Southern Tier and Central New York) for a minimum of one year.

While the $1 million prize was huge, said Wise, RealEats benefited in many other ways — from business mentoring and academic support by way of Cornell University and other Grow-NY partners.

Wise noted that one of the Grow-NY mentors for RealEats now serves on the company’s advisory board.

He said winning Grow-NY also helped RealEats build name recognition, which generated private investment. The company secured $2.8 million in private capital in 2020 for expansion.

Jenn Smith, Grow-NY’s program director, said the growth of RealEats “exceeded everybody’s expectations,” and that their success is benefiting the regional farms that supply the company, as well as a multitude of startups. Their products are offered as add-ons to the prepared meals RealEats cooks, packages and ships.

Their success is proof that Grow-NY is working, said Smith, and she is confident that the program, in its third and final year, will be renewed.

“RealEats makes it a downstream swim” when it comes to selling the competition for another three-year term, Smith said.

Entries for the 2021 competition are set, Smith noted, with the finalists to be announced in September. The winners will be named at this year’s Grow-NY Summit in Syracuse Nov. 16 and 17.

RealEats teams with GNC

Meal delivery service RealEats has partnered with GNC, marking the latter’s entry into the meal delivery space.

GNC will offer RealEats’ exclusive meal bundles through, beginning later this year. The bundles will include options for consumers with dietary preferences, such as meat-free or lower-calorie offerings. Through GNC’s digital and store footprint, the partnership will expand RealEats’ geographical reach, increasing the delivery service throughout the United States and furthering the company’s goal toward health and wellness.

realeats-food-technology-geneva-ny-dinners“It is our mutual goal to make it easier to live a healthy lifestyle, and this relationship will help us make a positive impact on the nutritional health of millions more people by providing this as a cost-effective yet high-quality option through GNC,” said Rachel Jones, GNC’s chief nutrition officer.

RealEats, which is based in Geneva, produces its meals free of additives or preservatives. It sources many of its ingredients from the local community, and its vacuum-sealed packaging retains every meal’s peak flavor, nutrition and freshness.

“We are thrilled to partner with GNC and join their eight-decade commitment to helping people live mighty, live fit, and live well,” RealEats founder and CEO Dan Wise said. “I started RealEats as a busy, single dad who wanted to provide fresh, nutritious dinners for my two young boys, but didn’t have the time to do grocery shopping, prepping, cooking and cleaning. Through this new partnership with GNC, we will be able to deliver our nutritious and delicious meals to a whole lot more people.”

RealEats is a weekly subscription meal delivery service that makes it simple to enjoy the nutritional benefits of real food. Founded in 2017 with a mission to build a healthier food future, RealEats offers a wide array of seasonal dishes that incorporate fresh, local ingredients that are clean, sustainable and nutritionally dense. RealEats is headquartered in the Finger Lakes agricultural region of New York, where the real food is. For more information about RealEats and to join the real food movement, visit, or find us on Facebook at, Instagram at @RealEatsFood or Twitter at @realeatsfood.

« View all posts