In 1964, Dean and Syvilla Pence established Wholesome Foods, Inc. as a home delivery service of poultry, meat and egg products in the Washington D.C. area. They got the idea for the business from Dean's father, Walter, who for many years made weekly trips to the D.C. Farmers Market where he sold local meat items. On Dean's first route to D.C. he sold only 9 dozen eggs and brought a lot of meat back to put in the freezer at the local locker plant. Dean started without any customers. He obtained his customers by selling his products door-to-door. It was nothing for him to put in 20 hours a day.
In 1965 Wholesome Foods expanded their delivery area to include parts of Virginia. In that same year, Wholesome Foods became the first poultry plant in the area to cut poultry products for Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in the area and also became an approved USDA inspected plant. From 1965 to 1985 our facility began expanding with the addition of a freezer, and additions to the maintenance shop, processing area, cooler and dry storage space. Also that time period included large scale cutting and distribution of fresh poultry to include clients such as Popeye’s Chicken and Biscuits, Marriott Restaurant Service, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Roy Rogers, Red Barn, and many more.
In 1986 Wholesome Foods started the distribution of meat products beginning with Smithfield and Kunzler brand meats. By 1990, a full line of western grain fed beef was added to be delivered directly from the Midwest. In that same year our outlet store, Wholesome Foods Country Deli and Butcher Shoppe, was opened to offer our full line of deli, poultry, beef and pork cuts to the local community and our wholesale customers. The 1990’s included the addition of other fine lines of meat, deli, cheese and salad items.
In 1992 we expanded our own private label, The Old Dominion Brand, to include whole and cooked country ham, turkey breast, roast beef and cheese.
In 1996 Wholesome Foods was approved to distribute meat and deli items to both Walmart and Food Lion stores.
In 1998 we had our BBQ Pit Grand Opening with “Cooter” from the Dukes of Hazzard. Our BBQ pit was built to state approved specifications to offer clubs and organizations a sanitary facility in which to produce and sell barbeque chicken in order to raise money for their group.Wholesome Foods Barbecue Pit
In 1999 Wholesome Foods launched a mail order Internet site at www.wholesomefoodsinc.com to offer our line of fine food items all across the U.S. directly to customer homes. We are now the internet distributors for Kunzler and Esskay meats.
The year 2000 brought an expansion of our loading dock, which included completely enclosing the loading area and adding more loading bays.
In 2005 we started producing "Virginia's Best All Natural Artesian Water." This product is also available for custom labeling.
In 2006 we expanded our maintenance shop and loading dock to give us a total of 13 bays.
In 2008 our Virginia's Best Bottled Water program expanded to include Ukrops, Whole Foods, Walmarts, and many other major chains and supermarkets.
In 2009 we extended our business to include our Transportation and Logistics Department.
In 2011, we expanded our outlet store to include a full service kitchen specializing in the Old Dominion Fresh Fried Chicken and fresh ground handmade burgers.
In 2013 we added our restaurant waste grease collection program.
In 2014 we opened our Service Department for autos, heavy trucks, and trailer repairs.
We will strive to continue the commitment to quality, service and value that has allowed us continued growth over the years. We realize that each customer is a key to our continued success and will continue our commitment to each and every one.