The Utah State University Extension Create Better Health (SNAP-Ed) program sponsors “Buy Produce for Your Neighbor,” a food drive designed to help those in need of fresh produce. Held at select farmers markets in Utah, participants are encouraged to purchase extra produce at the market, then drop it off at the Create Better Health booth there. The food will then be donated to the local food pantry.
“We are excited about this program that will allow those who may not have access to high-quality, fresh produce to enjoy the taste and health benefits of eating locally grown fruits and vegetables,” said LaCee Jimenez, social marketing and policy, systems, and environment coordinator for Create Better Health.
Food pantries often rely on donations to provide food to people in need. Jimenez explained that for people who depend on food pantries for their nutrition, it is critical that pantries offer healthy food options. The public has an opportunity to help people in need eat well when they donate nourishing food items, like fresh produce.
In 2020, working at four farmers markets, “Buy Produce for Your Neighbor” provided over 1,500 pounds of fresh produce to Utah food pantries, thanks to generous donors, including many of the farmers at the markets.
The food drive will be held at select farmers markets in Cache, Weber, Davis, Salt Lake, Utah, Duchesne, Uintah and Iron counties. Millard County has an adapted version of the program called “Share Produce with Your Neighbor,” which encourages community members to drop off extra produce they grow so Create Better Health can donate it to the local food pantry.
For further information, contact Jimenez at 435-797-3923 or [email protected].