Agriculture & Food Production

 

Service members spend much of their time pulling weeds and watering school gardens—and many of them fall in love with growing, producing, and promoting local food systems. Many alumni become farmers, food entrepreneurs, and farm-to-institution professionals to help build the equitable, sustainable food system we know all kids deserve.

We support these entrepreneurs in their development as agriculture and food system professionals by providing opportunities for career coaching and supporting their learning through Alumni Grants.

Profiles

 

Marlie WilsonAmelia Clements

Farmer and education coordinator, Vally Flora Farm

OR ’17

After serving as the first FoodCorps service member on the southern Oregon coast, Amelia started farming at Valley Flora, a family-run fruit and vegetable farm in her service community. Amelia is still there today, growing, harvesting, and distributing produce to Valley Flora’s Community Supported Agriculture members, local grocery stores, restaurants, schools, and food banks. She also facilitates a continued partnership between FoodCorps and the farm by leading farm field trips aligned with academic standards for students from surrounding school districts.  

“I might never have moved to the southern Oregon coast if it hadn’t been for FoodCorps! My service immersed me in a vibrant rural food system and affirmed my passion for growing food for my community. My experience with FoodCorps challenged me to think critically about the vital role farmers play in building a more equitable and sustainable food system.”

Lauren RhoadesLauren Rhoades

Founder of Sweet & Sauer Jackson

MS ’15

After two years of service and one year as a fellow in Jackson, Lauren quickly established herself as an innovative, passionate entrepreneur who values local food, education, and community connection. She spends her days making kimchi, sauerkraut, fermented mustard, and kombucha for her business, Sweet & Sauer Jackson. Sweet & Sauer is more than just a business – it’s a vehicle for local economic development and for prioritizing health in her community.

“FoodCorps helped me grow as a leader and an invested member of the community here in Jackson, MS. I have found that the best way for me to lead is through entrepreneurship. Starting Sweet & Sauer has given me a voice to advocate for a food system that revolves around fresh, locally grown food. – Lauren Rhoades