Retailers

Foxtrot Taps Whole Foods Veteran to Lead Private-Label Growth

Hybrid retailer also names Tae Strain corporate executive chef
Mitch Madoff and Tae Strain
Photograph courtesy of Foxtrot

Foxtrot, the hybrid corner store, cafe and delivery retail market, has made two senior hires aimed at expanding its private-label business across its cafe, prepared foods, shelf-stable and gifting offerings.

Mitch Madoff (pictured above on the left), who previously was VP of exclusive brands for Whole Foods Market, has been named SVP of private label and supply chain for Foxtrot, and Tae Strain joins as corporate executive chef.

"Our private label represents the core of what we love at Foxtrot—finding and developing the most delicious products from all corners of the culinary universe, and delivering them right to our customers' doors," said Mike LaVitola, co-founder and CEO of Foxtrot. "We're thrilled to welcome Mitch and chef Tae, who together bring world-class culinary talent and passion to our version of convenience. We are excited to set a new standard for what customers can expect out of their local market."

Foxtrot earlier this year announced plans to double its footprint in 2021 via the help of a $42 million Series B investment round. In March, it opened two stores in Washington, D.C.—bringing its store count to 12 in Chicago, Dallas and D.C.—with plans to open nine more locations this year.

Before coming to Foxtrot, Madoff worked at Whole Foods for the past 20 years, managing some of its most well-known and profitable brands, a release said. As a longtime food industry veteran and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Madoff also brings a culinary eye to his new role, which will be focused on leading the growth of the company's private-label division.

"I've been in the business of private label for a long time, and the way Foxtrot approaches their product creation is unlike any other brand out there," Madoff said. "It's the mindset and passion for bringing joy to the customer through the product experience that will make them a leader in the retail and convenience space."

Foxtrot's private-label line features unique packaged foods that range from the whimsical to the nostalgic, including items such as colorful gummy snack mixes and an adult version of the Oatmeal Cream Pie, made with bourbon. This summer, with Madoff at the helm, Foxtrot will launch its own line of ice creams.

Meanwhile, Strain will lead the recipe development of private-label items and that of "Meals by Foxtrot," a menu of grab-and-go breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack offerings. Tae has more than 15 years of cooking experience in James Beard Award-winning and Michelin-recognized restaurants. Most recently, he led the resurgence of David Chang's Momofuku CCDC in D.C. Previously, he worked at The Progress restaurant in San Francisco, where he was chef de cuisine when the restaurant was awarded its first Michelin Star.

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