The Farmers of Color Network, a project of the Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA (RAFI-USA), hosted a Farmers & Buyers Connect event at Zweli’s Piri Piri Kitchen in Durham. The event was sponsored by PNC Bank. More than 50 local farmers of color, chefs, and retail and wholesale buyers participated in the inaugural networking event.
RAFI-USA will provide all participating markets with coordination, assistance and technical aid to implement SNAP/EBT payments. The funding from Blue Cross NC will support the health of the community by providing funding to increase food access, strengthening the local economy by supporting small farmers, and allowing participating markets to build upon pre-existing incentive programs.
The consensus is that times have changed in recent years, but our values haven’t. We believe in a world where everyone has the opportunity to succeed. Our nation was founded on that principle, and we’ve worked hard to make it a reality as we build a society that values everyone equally. As an agricultural nonprofit organization, we work everyday to make sure those fundamental principles hold true for thousands of family farmers. But we know first hand that our work is far from over.
As part of our Bring Back the Bees partnership with the Burt’s Bees Greater Good Foundation, we’re working with a group of farmers this year to establish significant areas of pollinator-friendly plants on their farms to sustain bees and other pollinators. We’re excited to have Hickory Meadows Organics as a participant in the project. We also appreciate their willingness to let us use their farm as a living, natural laboratory to experiment with incorporating these types of crops onto working farmland.