Right now 1 in 4 kids are struggling with hunger in Arkansas according to feedingamerica.org. Local businesses are coming together to try and lower that statistic in our community.
The Tri-Cycle Farms in Fayetteville has partnered with Whole Foods in an effort do diminish food insecurity in our area. Since the start of the year, they have distributed over 60,000 pounds of food to people in need in our community.
“Food insecurity and childhood obesity, 1 in 4 children being food insecure in an agricultural state we should all be appalled at that.” Don Bennett, the Founder of Tri-Cycle Farms, said.
“Being in college and just seeing the amounts of food that is in the trash can and then seeing the amount people that have food that doesn’t have any it just makes absolutely no sense.” Lauren Peiser, the Director of Student Engagement and Career Services at Brightwater, said.
On Sunday,Tri-Cycle Farms, Whole Foods, and Brightwater held a food recovery brunch to show people in our community what can be made out of food that most would consider as waste.
“Arkansas alone is high in obesity and it’s hard to find the freshest possible food so knowing that we could be a big part in not only tangibly helping our community but also hopefully telling that story so other retailers and other individuals can find a way that they can give back.” Allison Chilcote, the Community Liaison of Whole Foods Market, said.
The food recovery program was started a couple of years ago by the owner of Tri-Cycle Farms.
“I walked into a friends house and she told me she didn’t know what she was going to eat the following week and that’s when I learned the definition of food insecurity. And then I learned that there are 32,000 people in Washington County that are having the same issues.” Bennett said.
3 times a week food is provided by Whole Foods and Tri-Cycle Farms and delivered to places such as 7Hills, and Life Source. Something that the organizations feel is necessary in our community.
“I think we really need to look at sustainability and really take some careful looks at what we’re doing and creating so much waste. 39% of our neighbors are food insecure and we through away 43% of our food. So why not match those two up and kill two birds with one stone?” Bennett said.
The owner of Tri-Cycle Farm said they hope to distribute over 100,000 pounds by the end of the year.