Newport, Rhode Island
Robert DiPietro and Michael Hallock are co-owners of the Rhode Island Mushroom Company in West Kingston, Rhode Island. Since beginning their operation in January 2013, they have become the largest grower and distributor of exotic mushroom growers in the Northeast. The company sells directly to some 100 restaurants and their products can be found in 96 Whole Food stores, six farmers markets and they also work with some of New England’s premier wholesale distributors. They say their tremendous increase in sales has been one of their largest accomplishments. “Before we were selling mushrooms by the box, now we are selling them by the pallet,” said Bob.
They’re also proud of their strategy to reduce food waste. With Bob’s 30 years of restaurant experience and Michael’s knack for marketing, they have developed several value-added products that monetize surplus production.
Michael attributes their success to their flexibility, commenting, “Our ability to survey where we are today and the flexibility to reevaluate and possibly stray from our plan has helped us position our business in a niche market.”