21,000+ lbs Local Food Donated in 2018 Growing Season

Our organization, Ugly Food of the North, was founded on educating our local community about the global problem of food waste. In the United States, it is estimated that 40% of food resources go to waste each year, resulting in an economic loss of over $165 billion a year. While thousands of fresh, healthy local food go to waste, 11.8% of Americans households were food insecure in 2017.

In Fargo-Moorhead, local organizations are stepping up to solve this problem by rescuing food that might have been wasted, and using it to feed the hungry. In the last growing season, a total of 21,094 pounds of locally grown fruits and vegetables was rescued and donated to charitable feeding organizations through Cass and Clay counties in 2018. This amount of food represents 17,578 meals for individuals and families in need.

Here is a brief overview of each project, the amount rescued, and contact information for further details:

Veggies for the Pantry
About: Started in 2016 by the NDSU Extension Master Gardeners, Veggies for the Pantry works to rescue excess garden produce and donate it to area food pantries. Master Gardener volunteers set-up produce drop-off locations across Fargo-Moorhead-West Fargo and individuals can drop off their excess garden produce on Monday evenings throughout the growing season. Master Gardener volunteers collect the excess produce and deliver it to area food pantries. 
Amount Donated: 4,820 lbs
For More Information: Contact Esther McGinnis: esther.mcginnis@ndsu.edu

Growing Together ~ A Community Garden Ministry
About: Growing Together is a program jointly sponsored by Fargo First United Methodist Church and Olivet Lutheran Church in Fargo. Growing Together manages six community garden locations across Fargo-Moorhead with over 200 volunteers. For over ten years, the families, primarily new Americans, come together each week and work in the community gardens.
Amount Donated: 8,623 lbs
For More Information: Contact Jack Wood: jackstomatoes@gmail.com

Volunteers glean crops during an event at Bjørn Solberg’s farm in Halstad, Minnesota

Volunteers glean crops during an event at Bjørn Solberg’s farm in Halstad, Minnesota

About: GleaND is a volunteer powered network organized by the Great Plains Food Bank, NDSU Extension & Fargo Cass Public Health. The purpose of GleaND is to capture excess produce from local growers and channel it through charitable feeding networks. 2018 marked the pilot season. The organization worked with 4 local growers and hosted 6 gleans with the help of 19 volunteers.
Amount Donated: 7,092 lbs.
For More Information: Contact Janice Tweet: info@gleand.org

Red River Market
About: The Red River Market is Fargo-Moorhead’s largest farmers market located in Downtown Fargo every Saturday July through October. The Market is committed to increasing access to sustainably grown, local food and food products in the Fargo-Moorhead metro-area and beyond. Produce vendors can donate their unsold fruits and vegetables at the close of each Market and the food is donated to area food pantries by Master Gardener volunteers.
Amount Donated: 1,474 lbs.
For More Information: Contact Simone Wai: simone@folkways.co

Note: These numbers do not represent food donated directly to area food pantries by individuals.

To get involved with food rescue, watch our Facebook page for volunteer opportunities, and follow Veggies for the PantryGrowing TogetherGleaND, and the Red River Market.