Local Food in Washington County Local Food in Washington County

Washington County Food Pantries

Washington County Food Pantries mapIn the United States, more than one out of five children lives in a household with food insecurity, which means they do not always know where they will find their next meal. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), in 2012, 15.9 million children under 18 in the United States live in this condition – unable to consistently access nutritious and adequate amounts of food necessary for a healthy life.

Many households in Washington County are "food insecure". The Maine Department of Education documents the percentage of enrolled students who are eligible of for free or reduced lunch. In 2014, there are 64.11% of Washington County students eligible for free or reduced lunch, the highest in the state.

For this reason - a primary focus of the Washington County Food Summit on March 8, 2014 is Food Insecurity.

In fact the "price" of admission was a donation to the Food Pantry Network of Washington County. The generosity of Food Summit Sponsors allowed us to provide a free locally-sourced lunch and sample table and over 120 Food Summit attendees contributed more than 100 pounds of food and $258 to the Food Pantries of Washington County.

The Washington County Food and Fuel Alliance is a network of Schools, Farmers, Churches, Businesses, Food Pantries, Community Groups, Educational Institutions, Social Service Agencies, and Government Representatives. They seek to provide food security, healthy food, and warm and safe housing for all people in Washington County, Maine.

In addition to supporting the Food Pantry Network, (download 11" x 17" map of Food Pantry Network and Community Meals Sites by clicking poster image at right) the Food and Fuel Alliance operates the Greenhouse Project that invites families, schools and commercial farmers to build reduced cost, year round, energy efficient greenhouses.

If you wish to add/update a Food Pantry or Community Meal Site to the map please contact Judy East (454-0465).

Working with partners the Food and Fuel Alliance offer greenhouse materials at a discounted cost. All of the materials available are listed on the greenhouse order sheet, while other materials need to be purchased through local providers. Final costs vary depending on individual design and construction variables. Workshops are hosted on designing, building, and operating a greenhouse. A group order is compiled once year with everyone contributing to the shipping costs to help keep costs low for all participants.

Payment for receiving a Food and Fuel Alliance greenhouse is a commitment to donate at least 10% of the resulting greenhouse produce to a local food pantry.