High Desert Food Farm Alliance “Grow & Give Food Donation Program”
As the 2016 growing season comes to a close, the High Desert Food & Farm Alliance is thrilled that we were able to donate 9,236 pounds of local produce to the regional food bank, NeighborImpact, and the 43 food pantries that they service.
HDFFA didn’t accomplish this alone. As part of our Grow & Give Program the Redmond & Madras Farmers Markets hosted the Grow & Give program all summer; the existing non-profit Seed to Table and the Sisters Farmers Market planted, grew, harvested and donated over 2,000 pounds of fresh produce; and HDFFA hosted Grow & Give booths at both the Northwest Crossing and Downtown Bend Farmers Markets. In addition we piloted on-farm gleaning at Juniper Jungle Farm where over 40 volunteers harvested 485 pounds of corn and 3,640 pounds of potatoes. These combined efforts resulted in not only reaching our 8,000 pound goal but also exceeding it by 1,236 pounds.
NeighborImpact, the regional food bank, worked alongside of HDFFA staff and volunteers to assure that this produce reached pantry families at the peak of freshness.
“Fresh, local food donations allow our partner agencies and the clients they serve, access to a greater assortment of produce that might not be otherwise available through current food procurement means. The food is fresher, goes out to service sites quickly and therefore, provides highly nutritious options for Central Oregonians in need – and tastes great, too!” – Carly Sanders, Food Bank Manager for NeighborImpact
“The Grow and Give program not only helps assure that all Central Oregonians have access to local & healthy fresh food choices but mitigates food waste, gives gardeners and farmers somewhere to go with extra produce, and increases awareness of food access issues right here in our community.” – Jess Weiland