As a program of the International Rescue Committee (IRC), New Roots seeks to build healthier communities by increasing food access for refugees in Salt Lake City. The Sunnyvale Farmers Market—one of three pillars of New Roots programming in Utah—runs from June to October, providing refugee farmers the opportunity to sell and market their produce while simultaneously offering fresh produce and specialty crops to low- to moderate-income communities in one of Salt Lake City’s largest food deserts.
Market Season Highlights—
- New Roots supported nearly $20,000 in sales of fresh, locally grown produce to residents of the Sunnyvale neighborhood and beyond.
- Over half of sales came from EBT or "food stamp" funds and a $10 Fresh Fund Incentive supported by the USDA.
- In 2018, 125 new individuals were enrolled in the Fresh Fund to receive $10 in free tokens when they spent at least $10 in EBT, SSI or WIC funds.
- The Sunnyvale Food Pantry and free kids lunch program provided record amounts of free food for families and children—a 44% increase from 2017.
- Bashire, a New Roots farmer, successfully ran his own farm stand for the first time and sold produce familiar to many residents originally from Burundi and other neighboring countries. All of his produce was grown in Draper through the New Roots Farm Incubator Program.
The Sunnyvale Farmers Market welcomed over 160 volunteers and nine community partners who supported the Saturday markets, including the kids lunch program and the Sunnyvale Food Pantry. A warm thanks to the following partners who supported the market and pantry by providing assistance to approximately 60 households each week, helping us distribute a total of 14,850 pounds of non-perishable foods and fruit:
- Granite School District & Catholic Community Services donated lunches throughout the summer to the kids lunch program
- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints & Bishop’s Storehouse contributed non-perishable goods to the food pantry
- Green Urban Lunch Box donated over 850 pounds of locally gleaned fruit through the pantry
In 2019, New Roots will continue to operate and expand the Sunnyvale Farmers Market, while also opening a new weekly farmers market in Salt Lake County. New Roots farmers will be increasing their growing capacity to support this new endeavor. The team is currently working to find the best location, day and time for this new market. We look forward to working with many of you to further the collective goal of increasing food access for Salt Lake's most vulnerable populations.
The Sunnyvale Farmers Market continues its success as a community resource with the help of dedicated community partners, vendors and volunteers. If you are interested in learning more about the Sunnyvale Farmers Market, the new market, or volunteer opportunities, email Margot Draeger, New Roots market specialist, at Margot.Draeger [at] Rescue.org (subject: Sunnyvale%20Farmers%20Market%20-%20Inquiry) .