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Phoenix Reshapes Local Food Distribution System During Pandemic

As tons of local produce runs the risk of over-ripening and perishing in Phoenix, Local First Arizona Foundation develops an organization structure to collect, prepare, and distribute local food.
August 19, 2020, 9am PDT | Lee Flannery | @leecflannery
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Local First Arizona Foundation is reshaping the local food distribution system in Phoenix. "Using federal funding from the CARES Act, the city will distribute healthy meals for pandemic response efforts produced by local growers, local restaurants and local caterers. While it was no heavy lift to find local growers and others to move produce, prepare and deliver meals, it required some extra work inside city hall to minimize the red tape typically associated with federal dollars," reports Oscar Perry Abello. 

Granted $500,000 in CARES Act funding to collects food from local farmers, works with local restaurants to prepare meals, and hire delivery drivers, Local First Arizona Foundation has created a system for supplying healthy meals to those in crisis while saving harvests of local farmers from perishing. 

The coverage from Abello discusses the lack of federal funding in updating broken systems of local food distribution. According to Abello, "efforts like this one to meet emergency food needs through local economies are happening organically in many cities, but they’re largely funded locally, if at all."

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Published on Thursday, July 30, 2020 in Next City
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