About Us

Ever since I first stepped foot into the bustling kitchen of a restaurant, undocumented and full of dreams, I felt a pang of unease deep within me. It wasn't just the fast-paced environment or the long hours that troubled me, but rather the disconnect I observed between the local food producers, the talented cooks, and the eager consumers.

As I chopped vegetables and stirred pots in those early days, I couldn't shake the feeling that something was fundamentally wrong with how our food system operated. Local farmers toiled away, producing fresh, nutritious ingredients with care and dedication, only to find themselves sidelined by a system that favored convenience over quality. Meanwhile, skilled cooks like myself struggled to source the needed ingredients, resorting to mass-produced, flavorless substitutes imported from far-flung corners of the globe.

It was a broken cycle that left everyone wanting. Farmers struggled to make ends meet, consumers settled for subpar meals, and our connection to the land and the food it provided grew ever more distant. But instead of succumbing to despair, I found myself fiercely determined to make a change. I couldn't stand by and watch as this unsustainable system thrived. And so, with little more than a vision and a burning passion, I set out to create something new with my co-founder, Aayushi.

That's how Chula was born—a humble yet ambitious endeavor to bridge the gap between local farmers, cooks, and consumers. With Chula, we set out to build a community where everyone had a seat at the table, where farmers could showcase their produce directly to consumers, and where cooks could craft meals that celebrated the bounty of our local land.

I'm grateful for the opportunity to be a part of something bigger than myself—to be a catalyst for change in an industry that desperately needs it.

( Ujj )Ujj
Founder of Chula Read More

Local Farmers

Chula connects both local home gardeners who may have excess produce they are looking to sell and professional farmers dedicated to cultivating high-quality produce. Whether it's a small urban garden or a large-scale farm, Chula provides a platform for farmers of all scales to list and sell their produce directly to the community, ensuring fresh, local ingredients are always available.

Local Cooks

Chula empowers a range of culinary talents, from cloud kitchen chefs operating out of facilities like the Established Muju International Groceries Kitchen, to cooks who own and run their own restaurants. This variety ensures that users have access to diverse culinary offerings, from single-item orders to comprehensive meal plans and catering services.

Local Consumers

Chula’s consumers are at the heart of its platform, enjoying the convenience of ordering directly from farmers or selecting prepared meals from various cooks. They can choose from meal plans, catering services, or single-item orders exclusively from our cloud kitchens or local restaurants. By choosing to buy local produce or meals, users help close the circle, promoting a more sustainable community.

Our Mission

At Chula, our mission is to revolutionize the local food ecosystem by addressing food insecurity and supply chain challenges through a digital platform that champions inclusivity. We connect consumers, farmers, and cooks, fostering a sustainable, diverse, and resilient community food network.

Our Vision

Our vision is to build a world where everyone, regardless of their background, has access to fresh, high-quality, locally sourced food. We strive to create a thriving; inclusive community where sustainable practices and collaborative efforts lead to a healthier planet and equitable opportunities for all.

Our Core Values

Accessibility

We strive to make locally sourced food more accessible and affordable for everyone, regardless of background or income level, by breaking down barriers and creating equitable opportunities within the food system.

Sustainability

We are committed to environmentally friendly practices, promoting the long-term health of the local ecosystem and advocating for responsible sourcing and consumption.

Quality

We ensure that all products listed on our platform meet high standards of freshness, taste, and nutritional value, providing our users with the best local food experiences.

Inclusivity

We embrace diversity and foster a sense of belonging for all community members, including refugees, immigrants, farmers, cooks, and consumers, ensuring that everyone has a voice and place in our food system.

Collaboration

We encourage partnerships and cooperation between different stakeholders, creating a stronger and more resilient food system through collective efforts and shared goals.

Testimonials

Cook Reviews

Customers Reviews

Acknowledged and Supported By Oneida County Government

Founders

Ujjwal Rai

Founder

Ujj, a founder, brings a wealth of experience, from humble beginnings as a dishwasher to now owning his own businesses. His acadamic achivements, including an MBA in Risk Management from Utica University and ongoing studies at Harvard, complement his practical knowledge. His motivation for founding Chula is rooted in providing access to quality, locally sourced food, fostering community, boosting economies and reducing environmental impact.

Aayushi Batra

CTO

Aayushi a full-stack developer with over a decade of experience and a computer science degree, co-founded Chula beacuse she wanted to positively impact local communities in New York and beyond.

Partners

Sales Partner

Marketing and PR Partner

Advisors

JP Delavin

Finance Advsior Phd Candidate in Mathematical Finance

Dr. Boris Houenou

Economic Advisor

Dr. Alexander Dale

MIT and Climate Scientist

Ryan Miller

Director, thINCubator

Tim Fitzgerald

VP - Mohawk Valley EDGE

Tim Giarrusso

CEO of Human Technologies

Work With

  • Esaan Food (Thai Refugee Woman-owned)
  • Wendy's Food (Puerto Rican Woman-owned)

Connecting Communities, One Meal at a Time