WELCOME TO MANNA!
Manna Food Project helps feed the hungry in Antrim, Charlevoix, and Emmet counties in Northwest Michigan. Manna is a partner organization of the Feeding America Food Bank Network and is funded entirely through the generosity of individuals, corporations, and foundations.
Surpassing Expectations: Manna and Coveyou Team Up for USDA Produce Program
Jessyca Stoepker | August 31, 2020
As part of a relief effort, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) partnered with national, regional, and local businesses to implement the “Farmers to Families Food Box Program.” The goal was to purchase nearly $3 billion in produce, dairy, and meat products, package the products into boxes, then transport them to food banks, community organizations, and other nonprofits serving Americans in need.
Though distributors of any size were encouraged to apply, the majority of those approved were large-scale food distributors and processors. But there was one supplier, a family farm in our corner of the world, also selected: Coveyou Scenic Farm Market of Petoskey.
Coveyou Farms is a working Michigan Centennial Farm operated by the same family for more than 140 years, providing Northern Michigan with fresh organic produce and artisan goods. David Coveyou said in an interview that he was one of the only farms in Michigan, and the Midwest, on the USDA’s list.
“USDA announced this program in April, with a simple application since the agency had never done this before. A week later they announced the recipients. We had very little time to get everything together,” he says, “and we needed a partner to help us.”
How do you measure hunger?
Hunger is a feeling that can be different for everyone, but the term “food insecurity” is the best way to actually measure the conditions that can lead to hunger. According to Feeding America West Michigan (FAWM), food insecurity describes a household’s inability to provide enough food for every person to live a healthy life.
We cannot tell just by appearances who among us may be struggling to make ends meet. One "bad month" out of the year can be enough to plunge a household into food insecurity. Lay-offs at work, unexpected car issues, or an accident may suddenly force a family to choose between buying food and paying other bills. Millions of Americans face situations like this every day that may lead to food insecurity and hunger.