Farm to Community
During the COVID-19 crisis, East End Food Institute is expanding its Farm to Community program by partnering up with local food pantries to address the surge in demand for food as community members are in need of additional support. The program includes distribution of 1,600 ready-to-heat frozen meals weekly to patrons of Heart of the Hamptons food pantry (Southampton) and Springs Food Pantry (East Hampton), plus a distribution of shift meals to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital medical professionals.
With support from The Balm Foundation, we initiated a pilot project in 2018 to build our Farm to Community Program. To extend the season and maximize impact, we were able to vacuum seal and freeze over 5,000 pounds of surplus produce from local farms that were donated to three local food pantries in Winter 2019.
In 2020, we are building our capacity to do even more! We are expanding refrigeration and freezer capacity, adding distribution from our headquarters in Southampton, and partnering up with more farms and local institutions to improve food equity as well as the economy of our local agricultural system.
Help us expand the Farm to Community Program.
Farm to Food Pantry (2013-2017)
Our Farm to Food Pantry program, in partnership with Long Island Cares, has given farmers an outlet for their surplus produce while at the same time providing hungry Long Islanders with healthy food.
During the growing season, East End Food Institute aggregated surplus produce for purchase by Long Island Cares Harry Chapin Food Bank, which then distributed the food to 600 food pantries in Nassau and Suffolk Counties.
In fall and winter, we worked with local farms to deliver produce directly to local food pantries. These deliveries were especially important in the Hamptons, where jobs are scarce during off-season months.
Since 2013, the program has accounted for more than 120,000 pounds of produce. Many thanks to the Long Island Community Foundation for its support of the Farm to Pantry Project.