One emerging model for connecting food pantry clients with local sources of food is to set up a market or farm stand at a food pantry during the hours of distribution. This model increases the accessibility of fresh, local produce to food pantry clients, although it also may require outside funding to subsidize prices for clients. Hosting a market at a food pantry and providing cooking demonstrations during pickup hours can increase the visibility and reach of the program, while also adding a nutrition education component that could benefit any food pantry client.
How Cooperative Extension Can Be Involved
- Grant Writing. Extension can help pursue external funding to support initiatives, such as hosting a local farmer at a food pantry pickup site.
- Coordination with Farmers. Extension agents can help to locate and coordinate local farmers interested in this approach.
- Cooking Demonstrations and Recipes. Family and Consumer Science agents and Extension Master Food Volunteers can provide cooking demonstrations, taste tests, and recipes to food pantry clients.
Farmers who are interested in accepting SNAP / EBT to increase their sales at a food pantry market can consult these multiple resources:
Publication date: Nov. 8, 2017
Other Publications in Farm to Food Bank Resource Guide for North Carolina Cooperative Extension
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