Farm to Families
Empowering Families by Improving Access to Healthy Food
Food choice matters. For children, healthy development often begins with healthy food. While that sounds simple enough, for children growing up in a low income, low access area, there is nothing simple about it.
In Philadelphia, affordable and accessible food options often consist of cheap, unhealthy choices high in calories but low in nutrients. These easily available food selections coupled with food insecurity can lead to undernourished children and a childhood entry into a cycle of chronic health issues, including obesity, tooth decay, cognitive impairment, delayed development, and anxiety and depression.
Our Farm to Families program aims to change this narrative and help provide a healthy foundation for children by giving families access to low-cost, high quality fresh fruits and vegetables, not readily available at their corner markets. We partner with Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative (LFFC) and the Carversville Farm Foundation to source, package and deliver mostly organic fresh produce, eggs, and other healthy foods to located at trusted organizations already rooted in the area where families of greatest need live.
Families Invest in More than a Box of Fresh Food
Marietta’s story might sound familiar. As a single mom to five children, Marietta found herself constantly balancing affordability, accessibility, and individual preferences each time she went to the grocery store. Plus, her youngest child needed to follow a medically-restricted diet, which added another layer of complexity to her shopping list. Marietta’s local store simply did not offer the quality or variety of fresh fruits and vegetables that fit within her budget and that her family required to be healthy. Each week she faced tough decisions at the store. Then she heard about Farm to Families.
Since joining Farm to Families, Marietta has been able to bring home a variety of mostly organic fruits and vegetables that meet her budget, her family’s dietary needs, and they all love to eat. Marietta especially appreciates the variety of long-lasting produce that allows her to make healthy school snacks for her son all week long and that her daughters enjoy using to make meals, too. The large veggie boxes have made eating healthy affordable for Marietta's family and reduces her stress about providing good choices for her children.
Quick Facts About Farm to Families
- More than 45,000 produce boxes have been ordered and received by families since the program began.
- The Farm to Families sites are managed independently.
- Farm to Families is open to everyone with no income restrictions
- In 2020, F2F reached an estimated 2,925 families.
- By June 2022, we project that the Farm to Families Fresh Food Delivery initiative will increase access to local, fresh food for 3,070 Philadelphia-area families annually.