In celebration of National Cooperatives Month, October was a time for getting out into our beautiful Burlington community! In addition to the 1,400 hours completed by our Member Workers this month, we hosted our final Crop Mob of the season and an employee volunteer night with The Good Food Truck!
First up: Crop Mobbing at the Intervale Community Farm! On an unseasonably warm fall day, Andy Jones, Farm Manager of Intervale Community Farm hosted a group of Burlington community members for our final Crop Mob of the season. In just a few hours, we harvested over 6,000 pounds of local, organic potatoes!
After losing their initial potato crop due to flooding earlier this summer, ICF chose to replant in the hopes that a later harvest would be possible. Luckily, that risk payed off and their CSA members (myself included) enjoyed the potatoes in their weekly pick-up.
As a fellow cooperative, ICF is community-minded and is, “dedicated to increasing access to fresh, organic produce for everyone. We work hard to get unharvested or extra vegetables into the hands of those who need them.” In 2016, they donated over 41,000 pounds of produce to organizations like the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf, ICF Fair Share, NOFA Vermont’s Senior Farm Share Program, and others. Each summer, ICF invites gleaners from the Vermont Food Bank and Intervale Gleaning and Food Rescue to harvest these additional crops.
Some of this produce inevitably winds up at the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf where a group of City Market staff spent last Tuesday evening preparing meals for the The Good Food Truck's community sites. As a program of CEFS, The Good Food Truck seeks to, “to positively impact and provide crucial resources and healthy meals to those facing food insecurity” by delivering free meals to low-income community members every week at a variety of locations around Chittenden County. You'll also see their truck around town at events like the Art Hop and Do Good Fest where all proceeds help to support their efforts to provide free, locally-sourced community meals.