Harvest Box and Bulk Buying Club Project Update
Abbotsford Harvest Box and Bulk Buying Club
Abbotsford Harvest Box and Bulk Buying Club tackles local food insecurity by making healthy food more affordable and accessible to Abbotsford residents. Twice per month, clients purchase fruits, vegetables, non-perishable foods and household items at wholesale costs. Skills courses and community kitchen opportunities build life skills, and a bi-monthly newsletter educates and provides recipe ideas. Participating families have reduced cost of living, increased purchasing power, and retain a greater portion of their disposable incomes to spend on other essentials. They access a dignified pathway out of food insecurity, and have increased self-sufficiency in meeting food needs.
Achievements of 2013-2014
In the project’s first year, 1,498 orders were placed for a total of 2195 Harvest Boxes (about 72 people per order period). 70% of clients reported that since the Harvest Box, their spending on groceries went down a little or significantly. Harvest Box saved clients 38% of their costs on produce, with total savings to all participants being $10,821. The project was successful in reaching ‘in-between’ clients who may not use the food bank but struggle to afford retail cost of food. Almost 3/4 of clients reported struggling to make ends meet and 2/3 spent over 30% of their income on shelter. While almost half worried about running out of food or limited food quality because of a lack of money, less than a third had used the food bank or had somewhere they could go to access food when in need.
Abbotsford Harvest Box and Bulk Buying Club brochure
Abbotsford Harvest Box and Bulk Buying Club poster