Local Food Hub is a nonprofit organization working to improve small farm viability and increase community access to local food.
A robust local food system that values small-scale agriculture, land stewardship, and equitable food access.
How We Do It
Local Food Hub is an innovative hybrid nonprofit working to develop a sustainable local food distribution model in Charlottesville, Virginia. We believe that small, family farms should be able to sell their produce to large, wholesale markets—and that hospitals, restaurants, public schools, senior centers, and grocery stores should be able to offer fresh, local food to their customers and clients.
Here’s how we’re making it happen:
DISTRIBUTION: Local Food Hub operates a local food warehouse where we purchase and aggregate locally grown fruit, vegetables, meat, eggs, and value-added items from more than 70 small family farms in Central Virginia. We then distribute this food to more than 150 locations in our region, including public schools, hospitals, institutions, restaurants, and retailers. Our infrastructure includes a 3,500 square foot warehouse with multiple temperature zones, an 18-foot refrigerated delivery truck, and a smaller refrigerated van.
GROWER SERVICES: While Local Food Hub believes that the most important thing we can do for farmers is pay them a fair price for their food, we also know that small farmers will be more successful if they have access to high-value training and educational opportunities. Our Grower Services program works directly with our partner producers to provide the technical assistance and guidance needed to successfully navigate the wholesale marketplace. We draw heavily on data gleaned from our Educational Farm, including wholesale crop specifications, enterprise budgets, and growing guides.
COMMUNITY ACCESS: We believe everyone deserves equal access to healthy food grown in our community. By creating “one number to call” for local food, we enable public schools, hospitals and retailers to easily purchase local food in large quantities. We also build partnerships to get fresh, delicious food into neighborhoods that need it. And finally, we donate 25% of the food grown on our educational farm to food banks and hunger organizations.
Be Part of the Solution
Are you a farmer? Joining the Local Food Hub is free.
Want to buy local food? Check out where to find it.
Want to join the movement? Find out how you can get involved.
image credit: Chiot’s Run/Creative Commons