What is Fresh Food Connect?

published on 16 March 2023

In 2016, a group of forward-thinkers from three Denver organizations came together from Denver Food RescueDenver Urban Gardens, and Groundwork Denver to pilot a new idea that would become Fresh Food Connect. They asked the question: "If gardeners had an easy avenue to participate in hunger relief efforts, would they?" The answer was resoundingly YES! Thus, Fresh Food Connect was created, giving gardeners easy access to donate their extra produce. This simple solution turned out to be incredibly powerful at increasing healthy food access for those that need it most.

 About Fresh Food Connect

Our mission at Fresh Food Connect is to grow a more local and resilient food system by connecting gardeners with their communities.

Fresh Food Connect is a tech-based non-profit that engages gardeners to easily donate excess garden produce to hunger relief organizations in their own neighborhoods. We are focused on engaging gardeners across the country in hunger relief efforts and encouraging more of us to grow beautiful, nutrient-dense foods. We believe the beauty of Fresh Food Connect is that it is really about connecting neighbor to neighbor with delicious, healthy, life-giving food. And by sharing our garden bounty and keeping local food local, we can minimize our carbon footprint. Did you know that 40% of food in the US is wasted? Decreasing food waste is one of the most influential things we can accomplish to slow climate change.

Using Technology to support hunger relief efforts

Fresh Food Connect licenses our technology to hunger relief organizations that use the mobile app to coordinate the aggregation of homegrown produce to be donated and used to create positive change in the local food system.

Individual gardeners use the free Fresh Food Connect app to donate their backyard-grown produce that would perhaps otherwise go to waste. Fresh Food Connect conveniently helps solve "the zucchini problem" by directing surplus produce from the garden to the hunger relief center, either through a pick-up or drop-off model, depending on local operations.

Our Impact

Have you experienced that burst of flavor from a garden tomato picked fresh right from the garden? We are working to ensure this experience is available for all of those in our communities. In 2022, we connected over 2,700 gardeners across 28 states with 82 community hunger relief organizations. These partners distributed over 75,000 pounds of homegrown produce nationally, supporting over 45,000 individuals experiencing food insecurity. You can read more about our impact by viewing our most recent impact report linked here. The best part of our work is watching people's faces light up with smiles when they see a bounty of fresh, free produce available to them from gardeners in their community.

How You Can Get Involved with Fresh Food Connect

Let’s get growing! If you are a gardener, download the Fresh Food Connect app today! If we're not activated yet in your community, please let us know at: info@freshfoodconnect.org. We'll work with you to find a partner together!   

Interested in partnering with us to secure more produce to distribute in your area? Please start by filling out our interest form. We hope you will join the growing network of operator partners that we are working with to fight food insecurity.

Armfuls of zucchini? Download the Fresh Food Connect app today
Armfuls of zucchini? Download the Fresh Food Connect app today

What if every gardener planted just one extra plant to share?

One small donation can have a tremendous impact. Just imagine, if every gardener planted one extra plant to share, collectively, we would have an abundant source of fresh, healthy produce available to be distributed to families experiencing food insecurity in our own communities! The free Fresh Food Connect mobile app connects you to a local hunger relief program, then manages and tracks your donations of homegrown produce throughout the season.  Download the app today!

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