By The Numbers
- Hunger relief agencies receiving help from the project: 16
- Food insecure individuals served from the program per month in 2018: 6,000
- Farms participating in the project: 26
- Volunteer hours committed in 2019: 1,061.5
Minimize Food Waste and Divert it from the Waste Stream
Since its founding in 2018, Hope’s Harvest RI has used volunteer power to rescue and distribute over 105,000 lb of food!
Hope’s Harvest RI coordinates a network of local farms and hunger relief agencies, organizing volunteer power to glean produce from farms and deliver it to relief agencies at little to no cost to either end. The program directly increases the amount of fresh produce available for hunger relief agencies while decreasing the waste from local farms.
Across the U.S., nearly a third of food grown is left unharvested in the field. This surprising statistic also applies to local, small farms in Rhode Island, meaning a wealth of fresh produce is unavailable to the population due to a lack of labor available to farmers. Hope’s Harvest RI, which nearly doubled its productivity in 2019 after its start in 2018, seeks to pair this opportunity with the need local hunger relief agencies, like food pantries, have for fresh food. The project, run by Eva Agudelo, has shown remarkable growth in its first year, and with continued support from grants and sponsorship, offers a promising resource to reduce food waste and increase the availability of fresh, local produce in Rhode Island.
In the coming years, Hope’s Harvest RI aims to increase food rescued by 10% each year.
This Rhode Island Story was prepared by Henry Dawson.