The Farmished mission is to provide charitable and educational services that promote a thriving local sustainable food system while increasing wellness and food literacy in the local community.
Vision and Overview
The current food system reinforces food selection by lowest price alone. Quality is rarely a factor in a consumer’s decision to purchase a food item except in certain small circles with substantial socioeconomic status. Among the un/underemployed, nutrition and health often take a back seat to price and availability. In this model, low cost food is shipped, through a series of steps, to grocery chains, consuming large amounts of fossil fuels. In addition, producers in this system often are not able to involve local community members and elevate the socioeconomic status of the communities in which they are located. Sustainable producers are relegated to serving a more niche customer base, which does not generate enough demand to warrant significant hiring to increase production.
Farmished ensures that the un/underemployed are exposed to or perhaps reacquainted with the ability of real foods to increase nutrition and health. Through Farmished programs, food from sustainable producers is made readily available to this population at a low cost. This increased demand for high quality, local foods allows sustainable producers to grow and seek skilled labor. Hands‐on experiences with the food system and intensive education through training and running the Farmished teaching farm allow a certain subset of the un/underemployed to become a skilled laborforce for sustainable producers. An even smaller subset of this group is inspired to become leaders and start their own local sustainable food producing businesses. This provides an increased supply of quality food and ensures that costs can remain low and availability high over time. As the environment and landscape changes for sustainable producers, Farmished is there every step of the way helping to remove obstacles and maximizing the efforts of sustainable producers in creating thriving businesses in the food system.
Farmished creates a sustainable local ecosystem including producers and consumers that can continue to grow and thrive. Farmished builds on the models that others in the sustainable farming movement have established in the past few decades. Farmished facilitates the success and development of farms like Joel Salatin’s Polyface Farms, which uses innovative methods such as multi‐speciation, rotational grazing, and on‐site animal processing to provide his local community with a variety of naturally‐raised and nutrient‐dense food products. Will Allen’s Growing Power provides locally grown/raised food to populations that are often unable to access or obtain proper nutrition through fresh food products, offers skilled training to the un/underemployed, and seeks to increase the economic viability of the local food system. Farmished extends the work of Polyface Farms and Growing Power by combining the approaches of these two organizations in order to promote a healthy local foods ecosystem.