LIFT-UP's Farm 2 Food Pantry program is a model within the state of Colorado, providing fresh, nutritious food to the communities that need it most. By sourcing from local farms and ranches, LIFT-UP helped build a more sustainable food system from Aspen to Parachute. LIFT-UP's work has helped create and sustain jobs and grow small farm businesses and with increased capacity, LIFT-UP will make a lasting impact on the health of the region's local farm ecosystem. 

-Gwen Cameron Regional Food Systems Coordinator for Hunger Free Colorado

LIFT-UP saw the need for healthier fresh food options beyond the typical non-perishable canned, boxed and bagged foods that oftentimes are laden with extra salt and sugars. Some initial grants, from Colorado Blueprint on Hunger, Hunger Free Colorado and Aspen Community Foundation, allowed for the purchase of fresh meat from Potter Farms as well as produce from local farms.

The Farm to Food Pantry program expansion during the height of the past year’s COVID-19 pandemic was a win-win for our community economically and in providing healthier food options to those struggling with food scarcity and insecurity. After years of encouraging gleaning during fall harvests, partnerships with farmers’ markets and a grocery rescue program that in 2019 received more than 371,000 pounds of fresh produce and dairy, plus the recent grants as outlined above, LIFT-UP had tested the waters. The Farm to Food Pantry program helped our entire community. This is an economic system that offered improved food offerings, from more producers, through community food sites like the LIFT-UP mobile food distribution sites to the underserved.

 

Throughout the last year, LIFT-UP served more clients with healthier food choices, helped farmers and ranchers with known paid food purchasing commitments and kept the resources in the Roaring Fork valley, regionally and along the I-70 corridor.

Barley Fields

Growing our F2FP program supports our entire economic system that supports our local-based food systems.  

Your support provides the sustainability needed for LIFT-UP to improve healthy food offerings from local farmers

and increases the quality and variety of nutritious foods in our Food Panties

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THE IMPACT OF F2FP

  1. Supports the local economy with the purchase of produce, dairy and beef from local farmers and ranchers,

  2. Allows farms and ranches to plan ahead for crops and needs,

  3. Offers needed dairy through Colorado-based dairy farms,

  4. Provides healthier food options to the underserved population in the Roaring Fork valley beyond the traditional nonperishable food sources resulting in potentially fewer negative health impacts,

  5. Creates a system with a lower impact on our environment with less trucking from outside Colorado resources.

  6. Through grants and donations, LIFT-UP makes purchasing commitments to local (Roaring Fork valley) farms and ranchers as well as regionally for additional produce and dairy.

  7. Farmers will have received both immediate purchases and up-front commitments; providing funding to grow their crops.

  8. Fall harvesting will be delivered to LIFT-UP through local distributor (Early Morning Orchards) to the LIFT-UP Food Pantries.

  9. LIFT-UP continues to distribute fresh produce, dairy and meat to their underserved clients in need.

  10. Beyond the typical grocery rescue, this program will also allow for ordering foods in keeping with cultural diversity and seasonality, while also allowing for flexibility in accepting secondary market produce or adjustments should a crop not produce as expected due to natural disasters or other unforeseen situations

THE F2FP PROCESS

  • Through grants and donations, LIFT-UP will make purchasing commitments to local (Roaring Fork valley) farms and ranchers as well as regionally for additional produce and dairy.
     

  • Farmers will have up-front commitments and funding to grow their crops.
     

  • Fall harvesting will be delivered to LIFT-UP through local distributors (Farm Runners and Skips) to the LIFT-UP Food Pantries.
     

  • LIFT-UP will distribute fresh produce, dairy and meat to their underserved clients in need.
     

  • Beyond the typical grocery rescue, this program will also allow for ordering foods in keeping with cultural diversity and seasonality, while also allowing for flexibility in accepting secondary market produce or adjustments should a crop not produce as expected due to natural disasters or other unforeseen situations.

OUR FARMING PARTNERS

  • Mattics Orchards

  • Okagawa Farms

  • Osito Orchards

  • Potter Farms

  • Rockey Family Farms

  • The Farm Collaborative

  • T-Lazy-7 Ranch

  • Topp Fruits

  • Two Roots Farm

  • White Mountain Specialities

  • Wild Mountain Seeds

  • Abundant TerrAced Earth

  • ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch

  • Dayspring Farm

  • Early Mountain Orchard

  • Erin’s Acres

  • Field to Fork Farm

  • Fritchman Orchards

  • Grays Acres

  • Green Junction

  • Highwater Farm Project

  • Juicy Acres

Happy Farmer