Produce Good is a nonprofit founded in 2004 here in San Diego by Nita Kurmins Gilson, Alexandra White & Jerilyn White from the 2009 grassroots operation of Crop Swap started by Nita. Their mission is to build an active and engaged community committed to finding sustainable solutions to alleviate hunger, reclaim and re-purpose waste and promote the health & well being of all.
Through this grant the Solana Beach Eco Rotary Club would support the important work done within the Market Share program of Produce Good. Particularly to support their newest project at the Leucadia Farmers Market with operational funds to facilitate the collection and redistribution of the donated produce. We believe Produce Good operates under the same standards and philosophy as Rotary and is extremely effective in serving our community.
Today 40% of all US food goes to waste and 1 in 5 San Diegans is food insecure. By sourcing and harvesting the excess bounty in the county and creating access for those in need, they are solving the problems of hunger and waste in one step. To enable their mission, it takes a green village and 900 volunteers each week to connect the source of excess produce with the need for food.
Produce Good is built on values closely aligned with Rotary and particularly Solana Beach Eco Rotary Club:
Reciprocity and trust, Respect and inclusion, Collaboration & Innovation, Sustainability and Passion.
Produce Good is organized into 3 programs:
1.) CROP SWAP: A residential and farm produce rescue which is distributed via San Diego Food Bank and Feeding San Diego among others.
2.) MARKET SHARE: Engages local Farmers Markets to rescue excess edible organics from landfills. This program also launched Organic Upcycling Partners with Urban Corp of San Diego, by a grant from SDG&E, to receive and distribute the bounty Produce Good collects to needy children and adults.
3.) COMMUNITY ORCHARD: Encompasses produce rescue and education for volunteers and community outreach. They host community events such as the Meet & Greet to hear stories directly from produce recipients, farmers and Produce Good partners. The 2018 Appreciation Event honored Harvest Heroes-47 volunteers and 13 growers. The Community Awareness outreach program educates residents about the importance of keeping organics out of landfills.
A few impressive figures:
121 San Diego growers and farms donate 155,000 pounds of fruits and vegetables. 21 Partners and 900 volunteers harvest and deliver produce from 331 produce recovery events. Last year, Produce Good reached the lifetime total milestone of recovering over 340,000 pounds of produce, thus keeping over 167 TONS of edible food from going to landfill AND providing over ONE MILLION servings of nutritious fruits and vegetables to San Diego's food insecure.