Funky Fresh Spring Rolls partners with Palermo's to expand in stores nationwide

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- It's some very good news for a pair of Milwaukee-based businesses.

Funky Fresh Spring Rolls is expanding thanks to a partnership with Palermo's, a well-known, family company and pizza chain.

Funky Fresh has a storefront inside of Milwaukee's Sherman Phoenix but customers may have seen their rolls in stores like Outpost, Sendik's or the Riverwest Co-op.

This week, they partnered with Palermo's to put the spring rolls in more stores around the country.

"We're looking everywhere -- from Pick 'n Save, to Whole Foods to Meijer, Target, Walmart. I'm just going to put it out there, every store in America is going to have Funky Fresh," Funky Fresh Owner TrueMan McGee said.

McGee started his business in 2015, and moved to the Sherman Phoenix in 2019.

A couple of years before opening in the Phoenix, he met Giacomo Fallucca, Palermo's CEO/Chairman, and they developed a mentoring friendship.

During 2020, the pandemic forced McGee to switch to a delivery service, and going from hot rolls to frozen ones.

In March 2021, he said he reached back out to Palermo's about a partnership.

This new deal has created a new company -- Funky Villa, LLC.

Palermo's will focus on the frozen side of Funky Fresh helping provide the funding and framework to expand the rolls into retail stores.

"True, first of all, didn't have to prove himself," Fallucca said. "We really connected the first time we met and True is a great entrepreneur and the Spring Rolls are an amazing product, and we looked at how can we partner together to grow."

"I trust them. I trust their vision," McGee said. "They started similar to us where they started making pizzas out of their bakery and just grew from there in the '60s and '70s and grew to what they are today."

Right now, McGee said due to USDA requirements, Funky Fresh can only sell their vegan and vegetarian options in stores.

He also explained that this deal means they'll now be able to sell their meat varieties in retail.

As for where customers will be able to buy them, the partners say... stay tuned.

McGee will still operate his Funky Fresh location inside the Sherman Phoenix.

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