CHRIS MITTELSTAEDT

The FruitGuys | San Francisco

College Pro History

Rookie Year: 1988 | Pennsylvania

Alma Mater: American University BS/BA, Business Administration

So, What’s With the Fruit?

Chris’ first job after College Pro was selling newspaper advertising in a magazine for senior citizens, which led him to then sell newspaper advertising in the San Francisco Bay Magazine, where he met his wife. They moved to Manhattan for a year while she went to Columbia and Chris actually wrote a novel! He never published it, but still, pretty impressive, right? Unfortunately, when they got back to San Francisco, the job market was tough, and Chris hit a low point when as a 27 year old, he started working for a 19 year old at a hotel running faxes up to rooms. When his wife got pregnant, a wave of panic and motivation hit him and he figured out what all of the new dot com offices needed – healthy food in the office. He followed that demand and The FruitGuys made their first delivery on February 16th, 1998. They now have over 100 employees!

The FruitGuys took the ‘simple idea of delivering fresh, local fruit to offices around San Francisco’ to build their reputation. Rather than eating unhealthy snacks at work, these startup companies were able to enjoy fruit in their place of business each week. They’ve expanded to Phoenix, Chicago and Philadelphia. Chris has been able to spread healthy eating habits across the country.

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“A LOT OF PEOPLE MAKE BUSINESS SO MUCH MORE COMPLICATED THAN IT NEEDS TO BE.  COLLEGE PRO HELPS PEOPLE UNDERSTAND IN THE SIMPLEST TERMS.”

Interesting Tidbit

Chris uses The Fruit guys to perform incredible community outreach with their Community Fund, which provides grants to small farmers as a way to support and grow sustainable practices.

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