For Immediate Release
For more information contact:
Kristin Weiss, Executive Director, Green Umbrella
Green Umbrella Members Work Together to Support Farmers, Feed the Hungry, Reduce Food Waste and Conserve Energy
CINCINNATI, OH –Imagine a place where food isn’t wasted, where it’s easy to find locally sourced food, and where healthy, locally-grown food is accessible and affordable in food deserts. That place now is Greater Cincinnati. Members of Green Umbrella, the regional sustainability alliance, are working to simultaneously advance goals related to local food, food waste reduction, fresh food access, and energy-efficiency, through grant funding totaling $75,000, provided by the Duke Class Benefit Fund. Funded projects are described below:
Our Harvest Cooperative and Ohio Valley Food Connection – Together, these two food hubs had $500,000 in local food sales in 2016, worked with 80 local food producers and represented the majority of local food aggregation and distribution in the region. With this grant, they’re increasing energy-efficient refrigerated storage capacity where they base their operations – Freestore Foodbank and Northern Kentucky Incubator Kitchen. Additionally, they’re increasing the types and amounts of produce that can be stored by adding additional temperature zones.
La Soupe – In 2016 alone, La Soupe rescued 125,000 pounds of food from going to the landfill and donated 95,000 servings to people living in food insecurity. With this grant, they’ll add an onsite energy-efficient walk-in freezer to double the number of people in need they serve each week (currently 1,750), with the goal of rescuing 300,000 pounds of food and transforming it into 200,000 servings to donate by 2018.
Civic Garden Center of Greater Cincinnati – Located in Cincinnati’s urban core, Civic Garden Center’s vision is to teach people to “garden anywhere and everywhere.” This grant will help them get locally sourced food into the hands of residents by providing energy-efficient refrigeration and aggregation for Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscribers that pick up their shares at their site They’ll also be able to refrigerate 1,000+ pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables for local community gardens seeking to donate to nearby food pantries.
Gabriel’s Place –This grant will allow Gabriel’s Place to expand their local food marketplace in Cincinnati’s Avondale neighborhood and provide meaningful access to the local food system, at prices that are affordable to community members. Because Avondale is a food desert, this grant will especially help serve senior citizens and residents living below the poverty line who tend to not own vehicles.
Dirt: a modern market – Dirt is Findlay Market’s local-only business that promotes local growers and producers within a 150 mile radius of Cincinnati. This grant will help distribute local food through the store and serve as a hub for Findlay Kitchen (a shared use incubator kitchen), the Findlay Farmstand Program (which brings fresh, local produce to three food desert communities with a population of 35,500) and Pop Up Markets (which takes Findlay Market to local businesses).
“Green Umbrella’s theme for Earth Month this year is Innovate: Activate: Celebrate. We’re thrilled to be giving out $75,000 to activate these member projects that benefit the health of our community and environment,” says executive director, Kristin Weiss. To learn more about how Green Umbrella is working to make Greater Cincinnati one of the nation’s top metro areas for sustainability by 2020, visit www.greenumbrella.org.
[Photo Credits: Alice Chalmers - Ohio Valley Food Connection; Suzy DeYoung - La Soupe]
Green Umbrella is the leading alliance working to maximize the environmental sustainability of Greater Cincinnati. We drive collaboration to fuel measurable improvements in key areas of sustainability. Our vision is to have the region recognized as one of the top 10 most sustainable metro areas in the nation by 2020. For more information or to become a member, please visit www.greenumbrella.org.
Duke Class Benefit Fund: Funds from the settlement of a class action lawsuit (Williams, et al vs. Duke Energy International, et al) will be used to benefit residential (home owners, renters) and non‐residential (commercial, industrial, business, government, nonprofit) class members, defined as “all ratepayers who received retail electric generation service from Duke Energy Corp. and/or Cinergy Corp. or their subsidiaries or affiliates at any time between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2008, in the CG&E/Duke Energy Ohio electric service territory and who did not receive rebates under the side agreements.”