Organizations, including the Space City-based food security organization Common Market Texas, have got together. They are working with chef Jose Andres’s culinary nonprofit World Central Kitchen. The purpose was to deliver more than 10,000 boxes of fresh produce to underserved communities in Houston and beyond. This was in the aftermath of Winter Storm Uri that left farmers throughout Texas facing ruinous crop losses.
Organizations That Distributes Fresh Produce
Common Market, with locations in Philadelphia and other cities and states, Common Market distributes fresh produce grown in the region. Moreover, it is by sustainable family farms in an effort to combat food insecurity in those communities. Moreover, there is a partnership with World Central Kitchen. That organization mostly focuses on feeding people hit by disasters. It was a natural fit to help people get the food they need.
Deploying Ground Teams
“We deploy ground teams, into disaster-struck areas and help people get,” Margaret Smith, director of Common Market Texas, tells Eater of World Central Kitchen. They partnered with Common Market Texas, moreover, which is my organization. We want to add something on top of those hot meals and get families whole, fresh local produce.”
Sourcing Fruit and Veggies
Moreover, the two nonprofits will source fruits and veggies from about a dozen farms across central and southeast Texas. However, this includes contributions from Houston refugee farming collective Plant It Forward Farms and Fresh Life Organics. Along with Gundermann Acres in Wharton County.
Therefore, these farms have offered to sell kale, sweet potatoes, and winter citruses like oranges and grapefruit that weren’t killed off by the winter storm to the organizations. This makes for a win-win prospect for both the farms and Houstonians in need of fresh food.
Selling these crops for the disaster relief produce box program also allows participating farms to clear their fields entirely, and focus on replanting for the upcoming spring and summer harvests. Those efforts, however, don’t require as many hands as full-fledged farming operations would, which means that Common Market Texas has offered work packing produce boxes to farm employees who would otherwise be out of a job due to the crisis.