The African People’s Education & Defense Fund partners with Black Star Industries—Bringing Uhuru Foods & Pies to the W. Florissant Corridor in St. Louis!

The African People’s Education and Defense Fund (APEDF) acquired a restaurant in St. Louis, MO at 3719 W Florissant on January 26th, 2024, extending our Black Power Blueprint Project liberated territory all the way from Alice to Grand!

Uhuru Foods & Pies and APEDF are renovating the building and opening the Uhuru Bakery & Cafe by early summer to bring healthy, delicious food into the heart of the North St. Louis “food desert.” APEDF completed the building purchase after a delay in closing the sale due to damages to the building caused by the recent freezing weather in the region. We successfully struggled with the previous owner and his real estate agent who had not disclosed the damage and refused to repair the building properly for compensation for the damage.

This struggle is typical of what our colonized community experiences when we try to gain power and economic development in our own hands. In the first two weeks, we hired the demo team to clean out the building; consulted with an architect to create the design; turned on the utilities, and got media coverage from RiverFront Times and Channel 4 TV. APEDF installed internet and a security system and put up Uhuru Foods & Pies banners so the community knows that Uhuru Bakery & Cafe is coming soon!

As Uhuru Foods and Pies Vice-Chair Bakari Olutunji said, “Uhuru Foods & Pies is unique. It’s not just great pies & food…. It forwards the right of African people to determine our own lives and future, control our own land, resources, food, distribution, and means of production.”

As part of Black Star Industries, Uhuru Foods & Pies is not a black business owned by an individual. It is part of an independent African economy we are building to once again own and control our labor, our resources and our future. We are building a healthy economic future for everyone: the solution to the hunger and starvation created by a colonial economy where food production and distribution are based on profit. APEDF is excited to contribute to bringing great food and popular pies to St. Louis and especially the impoverished and devastated North St. Louis.

Since 2017, APEDF has partnered with Black Star Industries to open several projects to uplift the black community of North St. Louis. We renovated and opened a community center at Alice and West Florissant and built a beautiful outdoor event space across the street after demolishing abandoned and condemned buildings there. APEDF renovated a 4-plex on College Avenue for workforce development housing for the African Independent Workforce Program and built the Black Power Vanguards Community Basketball Court on the former LRA property next door to the housing. Several other projects are planned in the community.

Based in Oakland, CA with an operation in St. Petersburg, FL, Uhuru Foods & Pies has been a bright spot in the food scene in northern California for over 50 years, known especially for fall holiday pies, street festival menus and farmers market products. Since 1981, volunteers have sold made-from-scratch pecan, sweet potato and fruit pies to friends, family and co-workers to support projects of the African People’s Education and Defense Fund. Local natural foods stores feature Uhuru Pies year-round and during the holidays.

In 1987 our movement opened the first Uhuru Bakery & Cafe in Oakland. It was a popular natural foods restaurant and bakery where many people came every day to congregate while eating delicious healthy foods and came to events to hear African People’s Socialist Party Chairman Omali Yeshitela speak. Revolutionary posters adorned the walls and it was frequented by well-known members of our community including Huey P. Newton and Danny Glover.

In December 2020, the Uhuru Pies team baked and distributed 1,000 of its signature sweet potato pies to local families at the annual “Christmas with the Curry’s” holiday give-back to the Oakland community. The pies were a collaboration with long-time partners Clif Bar Company and Eat. Learn. Play., the foundation of NBA superstar Stephen Curry and his wife Ayesha Curry.

Plans to develop and grow in St. Louis include collaborating with APEDF’s One Africa! One Nation! Farmers Market, local black farmers, with cultural workers and black community chefs once Uhuru Bakery & Cafe opens in early summer. Uhuru Foods & Pies plans to bring our popular menus and sweets to local farmers markets and festivals, in addition to offering eat-in and take-out menus. Future plans include opening the large Uhuru Bakery & Cafe production and training facility, cafe and outdoor event space in the former “boat house” at Natural Bridge and Goodfellow in collaboration with the African Independence Workforce Program.

Volunteer and donate to help build Uhuru Bakery & Cafe in St. Louis! Contact us at 314-334-8307 or at Donate at


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