Just as everything we do begins at the farm, we support innovative organizations that grow and nurture our industry. We are committed to making a difference through our mission and priorities to develop healthy, organic foods and food practices as well as contributing to the health of our planet. These featured organizations directly support those goals and we are honored to support and celebrate their work.
The Trustees of Reservations
The Trustees of Reservations' Youth Conservation Corps Urban Agriculture Crew engages disadvantaged young people in cultivating organic, fresh food in the city of Boston. The Crew learns about nutrition and sustainable food systems. They grow and harvest organic produce to donate to local food pantries. The program provides vocational training and leadership development opportunities.
What they do: Preserve valuable Massachusetts land for public use and enjoyment.
Location: Sharon, MA
Learn more: http://www.thetrustees.org/
FoodCorps is a nationwide team of AmeriCorps leaders who connect kids to real food and help them grow up healthy. These leaders are in limited-resource communities for a year of public service where they teach hands-on lessons about food and nutrition; build and tend school gardens, and teach cooking lessons; and help change what’s on lunch trays giving kids healthy food from local farms. The UNFI Foundation supports FoodCorps' work with organic farms across the country.
What they do: Connect kids to real food and help them grow up healthy.
Location: Portland, OR
UCSC Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems
UCSC’s Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems trains and supports new, innovative organic farmers and gardeners through their annual Apprenticeship Program and through regional beginning farmer workshops and mentoring. The Center also supports research efforts that improve organic farming techniques and promote biodiverse agroecological systems. The UNFI Foundation supports the Center’s 2015 efforts to increase college and university sourcing of locally grown, organic produce and to create public education programs for community members interested in organic farming and gardening.
What they do: Research, develop, and advance sustainable food and agricultural systems.
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Friends of Zenger Farm
Zenger Farm’s Emerging Farmer Training Program educates beginning farmers in all aspects of sustainable, small-scale farming in a culturally and economically diverse neighborhood in East Portland, Oregon. Internships provide extensive hands-on training in field techniques through the care of 3.5 acres of vegetables, orchards, chickens, turkeys and honeybees. Interns also learn about food access for underserved populations and participate in classroom instruction on soil health, irrigation management, machinery use, crop planning, food safety, marketing, and farm financials. The UNFI Foundation also supports the construction of an Urban Grange that will be used for youth education programs and will introduce an entrepreneurial incubator for emerging local food businesses.
What they do: Increase amount of sustainable, healthy foods available in the community.
Florida Organic Growers
Florida Organic Growers (FOG) offers educational workshops on organic crop production, including topics such as soil fertility, integrated pest management, irrigation water conservation, cover crops, transitioning from conventional to organic practices, marketing, agricultural policy issues, and organic certification. FOG also coordinates on-farm workshops for Florida farmers in different regions to increase knowledge about tropical and subtropical, organic, whole-system farming methods.
What they do: Support and promote organic and sustainable agriculture.
Location: Gainsville, FL
PCC Farmland Trust
PCC Farmland Trust is a land trust whose mission is to secure, preserve and steward threatened farmland in the Northwest. They ensure that generations of local farmers productively farm using sustainable, organic method, and place farmers on rescued property, enabling them to actively produce food for the local community. PCC Farmland Trust also restores farms by planting trees, native shrubs and pollinator species to improve the health of the property, as well as performing invasive weed removal.
What they do: Work to keep farms in the hands of farmers.
The Organic Center
The Organic Center's mission is to convene credible, evidence-based science on the health and environmental benefits of organic food and farming, and to communicate the findings to the public. As an independent non-profit 501(c)(3) research and education organization, operating under the administrative auspices of the Organic Trade Association, The Center envisions improved health for the earth and its inhabitants through the conversion of agriculture to organic methods.
Due to a generous grant from UNFI Foundation, The Organic Center, is working with U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) Agricultural Research Service scientists to conduct targeted research on the factors affecting the presence of arsenic in organically grown rice.
What they do: Bring you science that supports the benefits of organic food and farming to human, animal and environmental health.
Location: Washington, D.C.
Washington State University, Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources
Measure to Manage (M2M): Food and Farm Diagnostics for Sustainability and Health
More and more consumers are searching for healthier food, but how can an individual pick the healthiest carrot, or choose among all the so-called “healthy” choices in the bakery, dairy, or cereal aisles of the supermarket? A new program at Washington State University led by Dr. Charles Benbrook is working now to develop consumer friendly tools to quantify the nutritional quality and safety of individual foods, meals, and even daily diets. Dr. Benbrook’s new program will develop tools and recommend science-based metrics for measuring food quality and agricultural sustainability. The UNFI Foundation has provided a portion of the start-up capital needed to launch the M2M program.
What they do: Draw on science in helping farmers and companies produce healthier food, while helping consumers find their own path toward a healthier diet.
Midwest Organic & Sustainable Education Service (MOSES)
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) promotes organic and sustainable agriculture by providing the education, resources and expertise farmers need to succeed. MOSES' Grow Organic program offers farmer-to-farmer mentoring, on-farm organic field days, an in-depth bi-monthly newsletter, a Rural Women's Project, over 30 fact sheets and a wide range of information through their toll-free Organic Info Line.
What they do: Provide resources and training to help farmers grow organic successfully.
Location: Spring Valley, WI