Faces of Business: The journey from pandemic to Green Roots Meals to Dos Amigas
Colorado Business Roundtable's campaign spotlights Colorado business owners
Green Roots Meals is a woman and minority-owned business specializing in authentic Mexican food delivery to homes and businesses throughout Metro Denver.
The Denver meal delivery company is helmed by entrepreneurs—Érica Arteaga and Liz Gonzalez-Lara. “We are two Mexican moms living in Denver, Colorado curating the most authentic Mexican food and delivering to Denver metro households to help take away the work of planning dinner with our delicious and comforting options,” says Gonzalez-Lara.
When the pandemic caused their respective businesses to contract almost overnight, the pair saw the potential for a high-quality Mexican food delivery service that could bring prepared meals directly to Denver residents.
“The convenience and value of having delicious, chef-prepared food delivered to your doorstep cannot be overstated,” says Arteaga. “Our customers include everyone from local families working from home to ‘quaranteams’ that miss their favorite Mexican restaurant to frontline workers who crave a good meal at the end of a long day. They all appreciate having prepared meals waiting in the freezer ready to heat and eat.”
Made in Mexico
The roots of their business are in Mexico and family is at the heart of Green Roots Meals’ food.
Arteaga grew up working in a daycare center and kitchens of the Aguascalientes farm business her grandfather established in 1957. Her Denver-born husband brought her to Colorado, and she’s been importing frozen prepared food from Mexico to supply restaurants in the Denver metro area for a decade. She maintains deep ties to her family and country of birth, and all of the recipes and foods in the Green Roots line originate either from her family’s Aguascalientes farm or her Houston family’s meat business.
“We hope that Green Roots allows families to slow down after a long day and enjoy dinnertime with no effort or drama,” says Arteaga.
Gonzalez-Lara was born in Guadalajara and spent much of her early life in the United States working in restaurants. She discovered her passion for the transformative power of hair design and makeup and founded Beauty on Location and L Style Bar, businesses that have earned many accolades in Denver and beyond. Unable to find the true Mexican flavors she had grown up with, Gonzalez-Lara connected with Arteaga’s Mexican food import business.
With Green Roots Meals, Gonzalez-Lara has returned to the flavors of her childhood. “As a working parent, I understand the challenges of coming home to prepare a meal,” she says. “Green Roots Meals offers a delicious alternative to take-out that is authentic to the homemade recipes I grew up with.”
What is one of the most important decisions you have made for Green Roots Meals in the past year?
The most important decision we made was to not think twice and start this business last year as the pandemic began,” both women say. “We are so proud of ourselves for achieving so much in just one year and are excited for what the future holds.”
Who is your most important key audience?
“Busy families who want to help with meal planning and people craving the authentic taste of Mexican food,” says Gonzalez-Lara.
What is one new initiative or commitment Green Roots Meals has launched during the past year that you are particularly proud of?
“We launched the entire business concept in March of 2020 offering a contactless delivery of authentic Mexican food, helping people eat delicious food while restaurants were closed and most of our clients were quarantined,” says Arteaga. “During this time we also learned that the name Green Roots Meals does not really fit what we do and we are in the middle of rebranding.”
The new name will now be Dos Amigas: A Taste of Mexico and the website will soon be live www.dosamigas.com.
What are recent actions for Green Roots Meals that you are most proud of championing in your roles as founders?
As founders we are so proud of growing our business by 1000% in less than a year,” says Gonzalez-Lara.
Arteaga adds, “With the help of our community we have also raised money to give back to our local schools and we’re offering a non-profit discount along with providing tasty Mexican food to the Village Exchange Center for them to distribute to their diverse community in need of meals.”
Where have you drawn inspiration from during this challenging time?
“We’ve been inspired by the amazing essential workers who never tire of helping their community and from the people who decided to get creative and find solutions to make a positive impact in our world,” Arteaga says. “These are the times to adapt and try to have a positive outlook to leave a better world for our children.”
In addition to taking the necessary measures to help stop the COVID-19 virus, we hear there are many who are taking time to reflect on the values and lessons learned during this time. Have you done any of that and are you willing to share anything with us?
“Yes, it’s extremely rewarding to be able to offer a comforting meal to our customers while at the same time following all guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19,” Gonzales-Lara says. “As mothers, we feel extremely blessed for the opportunity we ‘ve had to spend more time with our children and 2020 made us appreciate our family and friends even more.”
Is there a particular COBRT policy priority that you feel most strongly about?
Both Arteaga and Gonzales-Lara emphasize, “As immigrants, we feel particularly strong about COBRT’s Immigration stand and their policy priority to help fix our broken visa system and the process of legal immigration.”
Who is your hero or most influential role model?
Arteaga says, “My hero and most influential role model is my Dad. He is my inspiration as an entrepreneur himself.”
“Both my parents are my heroes,” says Gonzales-Lara. “They both have shown me the importance of a hard work ethic and I’m grateful for that.”
About the Colorado Business Roundtable
The Colorado Business Roundtable engages with elected leaders, business and nonprofit leaders, and other strategic allies to improve the business climate in our state by unapologetically amplifying the voice of business across all four corners of Colorado.