List of the Top 11 Wholesale Food Distributors in the USA

According to Dun & Bradstreet the wholesale food distribution sector includes about 34,000 establishments with a combined revenue of approximately $991 billion. Though there are a few notable chain restaurants with large distribution networks in the industry, the bulk of the top distributors are independent companies that specialize in food distribution.

These businesses provide food to a variety of restaurants, caterers, institutes, and other businesses. This article will explore the top 11 wholesale food distributors in the United States. But first,

What Is a Food Distributor?

Distributors are in charge of transporting all of the products from producers to shop shelves. Food distributors are businesses that specialize in distributing food to a large number of restaurants, grocery shops, foodservice operators, caterers, institutions, and other businesses.

How Do Food Distribution Companies Work?

Food distribution is handled by several departments of a corporation, each with its specific role. The process begins with food production. Food is then collected and stored in warehouses. Following this, it is scheduled to be distributed at a specific time, place, and quantity after it arrives in the warehouses.

Taking this into account, a suitable mode of transportation is selected to transfer them. Typically, the modes of transportation include trailers, trucks, and other specialized vehicles that keep the foods fresh, safe, and secure. The food is subsequently sent to other warehouses or service providers, such as grocery stores, cafeterias, restaurants, and humanitarian organizations.

List of the Top 11 Wholesale Food Distributors in the USA

1. Restaurant Depot

Restaurant Depot is a wholesale cash-and-carry foodservice distributor with a wide range of high-quality products at competitive pricing. They offer a wide range of items to independent restaurants, caterers, and non-profit organizations.

The company was formed in 1990 and is currently a members-only (free membership) wholesale cash & carry foodservice supplier. Restaurant Depot is also a great resource for restaurant supplies and equipment. Their goal has been to provide excellent products from large cash-and-carry warehouse shops to individual food enterprises.

• Website: www.restaurantdepot.com
• Contact: (718) 762-8700
• Headquarters: 1710 Whitestone Expressway, Whitestone, NY 11357
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 130
• Tractors: —

2. US Foods

It was previously known as US Foodservice and was founded in 1989. It is a major American food distributor with operations primarily in the United States. It, along with Sysco, controls the majority of the food service business in the United States.

Around 300,000 restaurants are affiliated with US Foods. US Foods operates a network of 100 distribution sites across the United States. While they are primarily a food distributor, they also specialize in foodservice equipment and supplies when it comes to items.

• Website: www.usfoods.com
• Contact: 847-720-8000
• Headquarters: 9399 W Higgins Rd #500, Rosemont, IL
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 168
• Tractors: 5,336

3. Gordon Food Service

Gordon Foodservice, founded in 1987, is one of the largest family-owned food wholesalers. It is a North American food distribution company that offers a wide range of products. It also prioritizes environmentally responsible operations and sustainable food, as well as supplying foodservice outlets.

The company has built a name for its cutting-edge approaches to modern food supply chain management. In products, the list is endless with clients ordering frozen items, cooking equipment, fresh vegetables, meat, cleaning supplies, beverages, take-out containers, and even pre-cooked meals.

• Website: www.gfs.com
• Contact: (888) 437-3663
• Headquarters: Wyoming, MI
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 12
• Tractors: 3,000

4. Sysco

Sysco is a behemoth in the food distribution industry. It was founded in 1969 and is the top global food distribution firm in the United States. In fact, it is ranked 60th on the Fortune 500 list for 2021. Sysco is a market leader in the delivery of food and beverage items, as well as other products.

It supplies these to restaurants, hotels, healthcare, and education facilities, while also emphasizing local customer service. It also owns European Imports, Inc., a specialty food firm that sells charcuterie meats and high-quality international cheese.

• Website: www.sysco.com
• Contact: 281-584-1390
• Headquarters: Houston, TX
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 326
• Tractors: 8577

5. Mclane Foodservice

Mclane Company is a significant supply chain service provider focusing on the distribution of groceries and household items across the United States. It began as a small retail grocery business in 1894. Today, it’s now one of the largest supply chain services providers in the United States.

Its top clients include convenience stores, discount retailers, wholesale clubs, medicine stores, and other retailers. Without a doubt, it has grown its distribution and logistics network. In terms of products, McLane encompasses the whole food sector. Groceries, wine, consumables for chain restaurants, and pre-packaged fresh food are among the items it supplies.

• Website: www.mclaneco.com
• Contact: 972-364-2052
• Headquarters: Temple, TX
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 80
• Tractors: 2,178

6. Performance Foodservice

In 1875, Performance Foodservice, a leader in the food distribution industry, was established. It ships a large variety of food and restaurant kitchen needs throughout the United States. The company supplies authentically prepared dishes to restaurants, pubs, and other culinary establishments across the country.

It imports ingredients from all over the world and supplies several high-end restaurants. It also has non-food products like gloves and napkins, as well as cooking equipment and supplies.

• Website: www.performancefoodservice.com
• Contact: (804) 484-7700
• Headquarters: Richmond, VA
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 25
• Tractors: 2,047

7. Shamrock Foods

Shamrock started as a dairy company in 1922. It now distributes fresh food and merchandise across the country. It is well-known in the world of restaurants and other eatery services, from tiny individual businesses to large national chains. It collaborates closely with businesses to ensure their success.

Shamrock not only provides food and products but also offers a high level of customer service. It has chefs on staff to assist businesses with menu planning, as well as staffing solutions, sanitation requirements, and touchless technology, as well as resources to evaluate, measure, and manage menu expenditures.

• Website: www.shamrockfoodservice.com
• Contact: (602) 233-6400
• Headquarters: Phoenix, AZ
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 2
• Tractors: 655

8. United Natural Foods

UNFI was established by pioneers in 1976. Since then, it has made major moves in the food sector, focusing on scalability, service, and long-term sustainability. People, products, and processes define their operation, and they aim to change the future of food for the good of all.

• Website: www.unfi.com
• Contact: (401) 528-8634
• Headquarters: Providence, Rhode Island, United States
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 55
• Tractors: 727

9. Ben E. Keith

This company has been a leader in fine food and premium beverage distribution for more than a century. Fresh, high-quality meat and frozen packed meals are its 2 iconic product categories. It however also sells beer in Texas.

• Website: www.benekeith.com
• Contact: (817) 759-6000
• Headquarters: Fort Worth, TX
• Regions: South-eastern states.
• Distribution centers: 6
• Tractors: 1,066

10. C & S Wholesale Grocers

It began as a grocery supplier in 1918 and has since grown to become a market leader in supply chain solutions and wholesale grocery providers in the United States. It is notable for being the United States’ largest wholesale grocery supply company and the industry leader in supply chain innovation.

• Website: www.cswg.com
• Contact: (817) 759-6000
• Headquarters: Fort Worth, TX
• Regions: Nationwide
• Distribution centers: 71
• Tractors: 1,000

11. KeHe

KeHE is an organic food distributor that specializes in consumer packaged goods (CPG) and grocery store products. Its goods and products are carefully selected to ensure that all brands meet high-quality standards. It sells its products in supermarkets, health food stores, and natural foods retailers.

• Website: www.kehe.com
• Contact: (812) 333-1511
• Headquarters: Naperville, IL
• Regions: Nationwide
• Tractors: 438
• Distribution centers: 16

Looking for a Good Food Distribution Company?

A competent food distribution company has a well-balanced work environment, knowledgeable management, and adequate human resources. It also has a thorough understanding of both food production and the operators engaged. Lastly, look for one that adapts to the demands of an impeccable food network.

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