What is the Veggie Van?
The Veggie Van is a donation-based farm stand that carries locally-grown fruits and veggies to rural communities in Southeastern Ohio, 10 months out of the year. In 2020, Community Food Initiatives piloted the Veggie Van in Glouster, Ohio, with support from multiple Athens County based organizations working for healthy communities and a thriving, equitable local food system. Key collaborators include the Creating Healthy Communities Coalition, Rural Action, ACEnet, HAPCAP, and the Athens County Public Library system. In 2021, Veggie Van expanded to serve Glouster, Coolville and Nelsonville weekly, with periodic pop-up markets in other small, rural communities. In 2020, Veggie Van is serving Glouster and Coolville weekly with frequent pop-ups elsewhere.
In order to provide equitable access to the fresh, local, food Veggie Van carries, we invite customers pay whatever they're able. Firmly based in our vision for a thriving and just local food system, the Veggie Van offers locally-grown produce in exchange for any level of donation. All unsold produce is distributed through Donation Station to our food pantry partners, and all donations support food purchase and distribution. This model supports our local farmers while ensuring that fresh, local fruits and veggies are available to all members of rural communities where access to local produce would otherwise be limited.
Want to know more? Please take a minute to read this excellent article about Veggie Van, written by 2021-2022 AmeriCorps VISTA Rachel Brunot and published in Athens News.
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