Meet: Yami Holguin
Title: Owner of The Green Bowl
Where are you from? Beacon, NY
Yami is the owner of The Green Bowl, an allergy-friendly cafe focussing on fresh ingredients in every bite. The Poughkeepsie Galleria is the the Green Bowl’s second location, the original is in Wappingers.
At Green Bowl, everything is made fresh with clean produce and served to customers in biodegradable take out containers. Yami and his team love theplanet as much as they love healthy foods, and care deeply about our environmental footprint; All of their take out containers, cups, bags, and even cup holders are 100% biodegradable.
Tell us about your business and the services that you offer?
We specialize in clean, fresh food and a twist on hispanic food, most of our food being gluten free, including our empanadas, arepas, plantain sandwiches, acai bowls and more. We also offer breakfast sandwiches with nitrite/nitrate free meats, rice bowls, salads, smoothies, fresh pressed juices and much more such as passion fruit bowls, guava bowls, pitaya bowls, paninis/ wraps, we have a very large menu.
How did you get your idea or concept for the business?
I had an 11-year old sister who passed away due to cancer, when I researched and looked for ways we could’ve prevented or helped her cancer, we decided to cook healthier, make everything in-house and remove as many pesticides and unnecessary chemicals from our foods. One day I was thinking and talking outlaid how amazing it would be to bring our lifestyle to our local community, and my family was all about it. If you notice all of our sunflowers, those are in tribute to my sister.
What is unique about your business?
Our food comes from the Venezuelan and Dominican Culture, which is very different than other foods. We serve arepas, gluten free empanadas, arepanadas, plantain sandwiches, tequeños and much more. We try to offer all gluten-free and vegan options for all of our customers.
What made you choose Poughkeepsie Galleria for your business location?
We have been part of the local community for over 18 years, the Poughkeepsie Galleria is a staple in our community and when our representative reached out to let us know there was an opening in the food court, we thought it would be a fantastic idea.
How does your company help the local community?
As we opened right before the pandemic, we had a hard first year but we donate extra food items to our local food pantries, and the Beacon Community kitchen. We, also, try to donate large amounts to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital or local charities collecting for children’s cancer research.
What is your one piece of business advice for someone just starting out?
Take it easy, one step at a time. I rushed in and barely slept for months, burn out is real. Do research on everything, sit down with other similar business owners and get advice on even the smallest things. Pricing and cost analysis is the most tedious but the most important part of any food business, so make sure you dedicate your time to really figuring your cost of goods down to the penny.