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Raley’s Supermarkets has increased its continued support of the Winters, Calif.-based Center for Land-Based Learning, donating $25,000 toward the ground-breaking of West Sacramento’s newest urban farm.
The Farm at the Barn will increase access to fresh local produce, promote community sustainability, encourage volunteerism and stimulate educational opportunities. A percentage of the produce grown will benefit Raley's Food For Families program, which aims to end hunger locally by providing fresh, healthy food to those in need, and create a built-in market for beginning farmers to sell their crops.
The Farm at the Barn is West Sacramento’s newest indoor/outdoor culinary and events venue, located on the riverfront. Drake’s Brewing Co., which will feature cuisine that includes produce grown at the farm, has been chosen as the venue’s permanent tenant and operator, expected to open in spring 2017. Additionally, the farm will offer patrons an on-site farm stand, weekly farmer’s market and other farm and food related events as soon as summer 2017.
The project supports the Center for Land-Based Learning’s mission to inspire and motivate people of all ages, especially youth, to promote a healthy interplay between agriculture, nature and society through their own actions and as leaders in their communities. In 2014, the Center for Land-Based Learning started West Sacramento’s first urban farm, and today, four urban farms reside in the city, all of them farmed by beginning farmers. The Farm at the Barn will be the fifth urban farm site, consuming two half-acre parcels.
“Our partnership with the Center for Land-Based Learning provides a wrap-around approach to Raley’s support of the entire food system,” said Becca Whitman, executive director of Food For Families. “By working together, we are strengthening the market channel for farmers, increasing agricultural workforce development opportunities, and providing our Food For Families partners fresh fruits and vegetables for the food insecure in our communities.”
To raise money, the venue put on Dinner at the Barn, a Sept. 11 fundraiser for the Center for Land-Based Learning, which hosted a cadre of supporters from near and far. Funds raised during the event’s live auction are slated to be used to get the Farm at the Barn up and running by summer 2017.
Based in West Sacramento, Calif., Raley’s operates 121 stores in Northern California and Nevada under the Raley’s Supermarkets, Bel Air Markets, Nob Hill Foods and Food Source banners.