Building A Strong Regional Food System

FRESHFARM’s Role In A Strong Mid-Atlantic Food System

What is a food system?

A food system is the set of processes that feed a population that include how food is grown, harvested, processed, distributed, consumed, and disposed of or recovered.

What Is A Strong Regional Food System And Why Does It Matter? 

Growing, harvesting, processing, distributing, consuming, and recovering are interconnected in a strong regional food system. All these elements work together to protect natural resources, fuel the local economy, and support the health and well-being of all community members, from growers to eaters, in a defined geographic area. FRESHFARM’s work influences all aspects of our regional food system to advance sustainable agriculture, equitable food distribution, healthy consumption, and robust recovery to avoid food waste. We strive to create a more resilient, equitable, and sustainable Mid-Atlantic food system that works for everyone.

You, too, are part of our regional food system and can support this movement by shopping at our markets, volunteering with us, donating to our cause, and sharing our mission. The choices you make today can help create a better food future. 


Growing, Harvesting, Processing

FRESHFARM supports a resilient regional food system by creating economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses that practice sustainable methods of growing, harvesting, and processing food. With our support, sustainable agricultural practices become sustainable incomes.


Packing, Transporting, Selling

FRESHFARM fuels the local food economy through farmers markets, farm stands, and our innovative hyperlocal distribution model, which supplies community-based organizations serving high-need populations with locally grown food at wholesale prices.


Education, Food Access, Preparing/Eating Food

FRESHFARM drives demand for local food through education, marketing, and food access. At markets and in schools and Early Childhood Education centers, community members, students, and families learn about seasonal produce, enjoyable ways to prepare and eat local food, and where to buy it directly from farmers and producers. Our food access work lowers economic barriers and maximizes purchasing power for shoppers using federal nutrition benefits (SNAP/EBT).


Gleaning, Recycling, Composting

FRESHFARM’s gleaning efforts keep tens of thousands of pounds of local food out of landfills by recovering unsold food that farmers and producers have at the end of market and donating it to emergency food organizations. We also provide compost collection at many markets, which, in turn, enriches the region’s soil and enhances agricultural output.