Where Can You Find CFR? Everywhere!

Our goal of “feeding more and wasting less” in Montgomery County is a nonstop endeavor, and Community Food Rescue is thrilled to share learnings, and learn with others who share our vision. In the past few months, we’ve participated in a number of events with partners in our network and the broader community.

  • Cultivate the Chesapeake Foodshed 18th Annual Conference: In January, CFR kicked off the new year by presenting “Feed More and Waste Less on the Farm: The Benefits of Food Donation” at Future Harvest CASA’s farm and food gathering.

    Future Harvest - Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture conference
    CFR partners Plow and Stars Farm’s Amanda Cather (left) and WUMCO HELP’s Catherine Beliveau (ctr), presented with CFR’s Susan Wexler at Future Harvest CASA’s Cultivate the Chesapeake Foodshed conference.
  • William S. Abell Foundation and Capital Area Food Bank Food Waste and Recovery Technology Luncheon: In February, Manna Food Center CEO Jackie DeCarlo shared CFR’s work with luncheon attendees.
  • The Recycling Committee of the Metro Washington Council of Governments: In March, CFR presented on its work and impact of its network of partners at a session focusing on food recovery.
  • BioCycle East Coast 2017: In April, CFR participated in a panel discussing food recovery within the recycling and composting community.
  • Montgomery County GreenFest: In May, CFR exhibited materials in Gaithersburg’s Bohrer Park at this event focused on building community and improving our environment.

    Greenfest
    My Green Montgomery Director Lisa Feldt (left), County Executive Ike Leggett (ctr), and Council President Roger Berliner support CFR at Montgomery County GreenFest.

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Don’t Miss the Olney Farmers and Artists Market!

On Sundays, the Olney Farmers and Artists Market is THE place to be if you’re into good food, local produce, unique art and building community. While you may first be enticed by vendors who provide delicious edibles and cool crafts, you’ll want to stay longer to visit with exhibiting local non-profits and small businesses.

Mark Mills
Mark Mills, owner of Chocolates and Tomatoes Farm, was instrumental in coordinating market vendors who contributed 1,600 pounds of food over three weekends in May.

The market is also a wonderful CFR partner. During the market’s peak months, Manna Food Center sends trucks to pick up produce each Sunday when the market closes. After this year’s peak harvest season – when there wasn’t enough food to fill a truck – the market signed on as a CFR donor. All winter through April, delicious winter produce and prepared food was picked up by a CFR volunteer and delivered to Seneca Heights Apartments (SHA), which provides permanent supportive housing.

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CFR Members Build Their Capacity to Serve

The simple lack of refrigeration or freezer space is often cited as a major bottleneck in recovering and redistributing surplus food to where it is most needed.  For the past three years, Community Food Rescue (CFR) has awarded mini-grants to its members to increase their capacity to serve more people in the community who experience hunger.  Food donor, Red Wiggler Community Farm, and food assistance organization, Liberty Grove United Methodist Church (UMC), are among this year’s recipients.

Susan Burgess can now process and freeze recovered fresh local produce in the new commercial freezer purchased with a CFR mini-grant.
Susan Burgess can now hold recovered fresh local produce in a refrigerator,  purchased with a CFR mini-grant, until processed and frozen.

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Helping You Help Others: Take this CFR Interest Survey

Since our start in Sept. 2015, Community Food Rescue’s (CFR) growing network—now 200 members strong — has redirected 744,487 lbs. of rescued food, representing about 496,000 meals, to people experiencing hunger. As we plan our programming for 2017, please take this short CFR interest survey to let us know how we can make the most of your CFR experience.

Butler’s Orchard has been an active CFR donor, shown here donating surplus winter squash and apples headed to Rainbow Community Development Center

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Celebrating Asbury Methodist Village: A Giving Community

Step onto the Asbury Methodist Village (AMV) campus and you just feel it. The camaraderie. The possibility. It’s a welcoming environment created by the energetic, service-oriented people who live and work at this 130-acre Gaithersburg, Md., continuing care retirement community. In 2016, Asbury and its partner Sodexo, which provides facilities and dining management on the campus, committed to helping the broader Montgomery County community through their new partnership with Community Food Rescue (CFR).

All  Asbury Methodist Village surplus prepared food is frozen for ease of transport three times per week.
All Asbury Methodist Village surplus prepared food is frozen for ease of transport..

Three times each week, Asbury’s chefs pack up surplus, healthy, and safe prepared food—fish, chicken, and beef entrees, rice, pasta, potatoes and vegetable side dishes and soups. All the food is frozen and easy to transport by CFR volunteer food runners. The meals are delivered to CFR network food assistance organizations including, Seneca Heights Apartments, permanent supportive housing, The Montgomery Coalition for the Homeless serving their men’s shelter, Family Services, Inc. serving clients receiving mental health care and to Interfaith Works serving formerly homeless women with mental disabilities in transitional housing.“Our clients just love the food and we’re very appreciative of how delicious and healthy this food is for our clients,” said Sarah Cherner, Program Assistant at Interfaith Works.

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TIPS FOR A MORE MEANINGFUL HOLIDAY – FEED MORE, WASTE LESS

Thanksgiving is over and for many of us getting creative with leftovers – or wishing we had more of them – is top of mind. But as we continue this season of festive holiday gatherings and rejoice with colleagues, friends and family, we should remember that as many as 70,000 people in Montgomery County are worried about where their next meal will come from.

group-at-table
Holidays provide great opportunities to gather with friends, family, and colleagues. Holiday parties often generate opportunities to help those who experience hunger.

The Community Food Rescue network and innovative matching app is helping to close the hunger gap in our community by connecting food businesses of all kinds – catering companies, food markets, farms, restaurants, schools and more – with those who will benefit greatly from their unserved or unsold food.

This holiday season, whether you’re a local business, an individual, family or nonprofit looking for ways to help struggling neighbors, CFR has some easy suggestions for how to put more meaning into your holiday! (Bonus benefit – you’ll also be reducing food waste, a huge global problem that contributes to climate change!)

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Feed More, Waste Less