Recently, several news television programs have featured stories about the amount of food that goes to waste in this country. When we go to the grocery store we expect tomatoes to be perfectly shaped, with just the right amount of ‘give’ and of course, they must not have any blemishes. The ‘less than perfect’ looking tomato ends up in a landfill. If you have ever had a garden, you know that not every tomato looks perfect. From our garden, however, we eat the ‘ugly’ tomato because we know it will still taste fabulous. From the grocery store, we expect near perfection and leave the ugly duckling on the shelf.
To address the unnecessary waste of produce, the 3000 Club was founded. The 3000 Club is a non-profit, charitable organization with a 501(c)3 status. They work closely with local food banks. They have a program called Market on the Move which is geared towards families wanting to stop the abundant food waste while they save a few dollars. This program puts previously wasted produce into the hands of consumers at an affordable price.
Market on the Move provides a farmers’ market atmosphere at various locations throughout Metro Phoenix and Tucson. For a $10 donation, you will receive up to 60 pounds of fresh produce. The type of produce available varies since they offer fresh, seasonal items.
If you wonder what you will be able to do with 60 pounds of produce, there are many options. First, if you have a large family, you can feed your family for a fraction of what it would cost you from the grocery store. Or….try using canning techniques to preserve your produce. You can also be a nice neighbor and share it with your friends and family. If you absolutely have no idea what you would do with 60 pounds of produce, bring home only what you want. You will still save money.
If you want an even better deal, purchase a $100 yearly membership to the 3000 Club. Members can go to any location throughout Metro Phoenix or Tucson weekly and get their produce at no additional cost.
Since its inception in 2010 and through its successful partnership with churches and other non-profit organizations, Market on the Move is now averaging between 8-12 locations distributing over 200,000 pounds of produce every week. See the locations and dates of distribution centers in Mesa and elsewhere in the valley. The next one in Mesa is on Saturday, March 03, 2012 08:00am – 12:00pm at Harpers Nursery (1830 East McKellips Rd., Mesa, AZ 85203). Keep checking back to see other dates and times for distribution.
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