Lyndsey Marston is the Director of MFT's Stewardship Program, and monitors MFT's farm easements in…
Unity Food Hub’s Harvest Share is another creative solution to building markets for Maine farms while strengthening access to local food for more Mainers.
UFH’s Harvest Share is one of many growing efforts across the state to meet the demand for fresh, local foods among low-income consumers. Similar incentive programs, now called Maine Harvest Bucks, are providing bonus local fruit and vegetables to SNAP participants at farmers’ markets, farm stands, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms, mobile markets, as well as retail stores and other farm aggregators throughout Maine.
Fruit and vegetable shares are half-price for customers paying with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits thanks to support from the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation’s Healthy Food Fund and MFT’s federal Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) grant. In an effort to make participation more inclusive, MFT Food Access Project Coordinators have organized drop-sites at affordable housing communities and other locations that are especially accessible to low-income Mainers.
UFH aggregates product from more than 30 Maine family farms and food producers into weekly share-box deliveries. There are public drop-sites in Belfast, Unity, Portland, South Portland, and Saco and more are in the works. The subscription-based share offers customers flexibility: deliveries can be selected to be weekly, bi-weekly or monthly, depending on the share type. Customers can enroll anytime before Sunday for the following week’s delivery. Going away for a week? No worries. With a week’s notice, you can opt-out for a week’s delivery. Harvest Share runs continually through March, offering a wide variety of products from Maine farms and food producers throughout the seasons. All are welcome to sign up for a share.
Last week’s Veggie Share sourced produce from eight different farms (including New Beat Farm, Emery Farm, Harvest Tide Organics, and others!) with options to add on meat, dairy, eggs, grains, tofu, and more, all produced in Maine. Check out the Weekly Harvest Notes for recipes and culinary tips for in-season foods and read the rotating spotlight to meet your farmers (and others!) involved with bringing such high-quality local food to you and your neighbors.
Interested in getting all this goodness delivered to you, too? Sign up! Harvest Shares are available on a rolling basis through March. All the details are online. You can sign up and select your drop-site online or by contacting:
Abby Farnham email@example.com (southern Maine); and
Sophie DeMaio firstname.lastname@example.org (central and midcoast Maine).
For general UFH inquiries, contact: email@example.com