Farmer Foodshare Challenge Nourishes the Community

From Cary to Carrboro, the Farmer Foodshare Challenge rolled through the Triangle last week, raising more than $2,000 for a new Farm-to-Family CSA Fund. The event, spanning four days of farmers’ markets, also gathered 2,000 pounds of food for those at risk of urgent hunger.

Harnessing the generosity of shoppers through its Donation Stations, Farmer Foodshare collected $2,134 at markets from Sept. 18-22. The Durham and Carrboro markets led the way in donations, with $774 and $535, respectively.

A full 100 percent of the money raised will be used to start a new Farm-to-Family CSA Fund that will purchase as many CSA shares as possible to target at-risk children and their families that cannot access the existing food pantry system. Farmers can opt in to the program and all funds raised at a particular market will be spent with farmers and organizations from that market.

In addition, farmers at each of the 12 participating markets were extremely generous! Thanks to our local growers and the shoppers who also contributed food and funds for food at market, Farmer Foodshare donated 2,143 pounds of healthy food to our partner agencies engaged in combating urgent hunger. Because many of our partner agencies struggle to source enough fresh, local food, these donations are vital.

The 4th Annual Farmer Foodshare Challenge took place at the Carrboro Farmers’ Market, Chapel Hill Farmers’ Market, Chatham Mills Farmers’ Market, Durham Farmers’ Market, Eno River Farmers’ Market, Fearrington Farmers’ Market, Hillsborough Farmers Market, Raleigh Downtown Farmers Market, South Durham Farmers Market, Southern Village Farmers’ Market and Western Wake Farmers’ Market.

Emphasizing the kids and “sharing the bounty” themes, many markets offered children’s art activities, including face painting, scavenger hunts and a draw your favorite vegetable game. The results, like the Farmer Foodshare Challenge, were awesome!

Farmer Foodshare Donation Stations operate weekly in the Triangle, downtown Charlotte, Shelby and Boiling Springs. This is a statewide program. If you are interested in volunteering, starting your own Donation Station program or donating to the program as a farmer or a farm fresh food fan, contact info@farmerfoodshare.org.

We also have other programs connecting growers with folks needing healthy farm fresh food, including the POP Food Market and Freshkids! Farm to Kids that can connect nonprofits, social mission businesses, afterschool programs and schools with a consistent supply of NC-grown food at a reasonable price. For more information, contact info@popfoodmarket.org.

SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR COMMUNITY PARTNER AGENCIES, FARMERS’ MARKETS, FARMERS, SHOPPERS AND ALL OF THE WONDERFUL VOLUNTEERS WHO HELPED MAKE THIS EVENT HAPPEN.

THE PRODUCE BOX, UNC’S HEELPRINT COMMUNICATIONS, BALLOONS N’ TUNES AND THE POSTER GUYS WERE OUR BEHIND THE SCENES SPECIAL SUPPORTERS! THANK YOU ALL!

Farmer Foodshare is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Here are some photos of the day. For more photos, go to the Farmer Foodshare Photo Gallery.

Hard Facts From Eno River Farmers’ Market

Full Haul from Durham Farmers’ Market

Kid Fun for a Good Cause at Carrboro Farmers Market