The Delta Fresh Foods Initiative has been steadily growing on our vision since we first came together in 2009. We're building on the momentum and lessons learned from years of work building high tunnels, school and community gardens, doing community organizing, consumer outreach and education in numerous communities across the Delta! Our vision is broad (health and wealth for all in the Delta); but we know change starts small, so we are currently focusing most of our effort on an ambitious project in North Bolivar County. It's called the Good Food Revolution, and the aim is to rebuild a robust, sustainable, equitable local food system in Shelby, Mound Bayou and Winstonville.
Brooke Pochee-Smith, MPH, MIIM
MS Communtiy Engagement Specialist- Rural Education
Save the Children, US Programs
117 Crestline #305
Clarksdale, MS 38614
History of the Delta Fresh Foods Initiative
Many of our DFFI board and members are from these communities, and we know first-hand that real change and long-term success comes when ideas and initiatives come directly from the community. To that end, we've developed a Local Advisory Board of dedicated local growers and local health champions including youth working together with us to make a difference in this area.
Delta Fresh Foods Initiative
Keith A. Benson, Sr.
Founder & CEO
Alliance of Sustainable Farms
1060 E. County Line Rd.
Suite 3A #162
Ridgeland, MS 39157
The Delta Fresh Foods Initiative (DFFI) is a diverse coalition of community stakeholders committed to establishing sustainable, equitable community food systems in the Mississippi Delta. Members of the group include growers, consumers, health and agriculture educators, food retailers (including farmers' markets and other outlets), community-based organizations, funders, healthy food advocates and more.
February 2010 saw the birth of DFFI, in partnership with WhyHunger, a national non-profit organization committed to building the food movement throughout the country and around the world. More than 130 local participants were
Trena L. Robinson, MBA
Director of Advancement &
St. Gabriel Mercy Center, Inc.
Mound Bayou, MS 38762
Dr. Deborah Moore, Consultant
1202 North Street
A Message from the Board
convened to share their vision for a healthy Mississippi Delta, establish a common understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing Delta residents today, and develop a community action plan to make their vision a reality.Since that time, DFFI has developed into a strong network of committed members who seek to build supply and demand for fresh locally grown food in the region by connecting existing components of sustainable community food systems in the Delta; bringing together other national and local partners with a variety of resources; providing training and technical assistance for sustainable growers, consumers and advocates; and engaging the next generation in building community food systems.
The Delta Fresh Foods Initiative is growing and expanding as membership and leadership within the coalition, partnerships and projects, and momentum continue to build. Join us for a healthier, more productive Mississippi Delta!
While we are starting with three communities, our goal is to build a model that can be duplicated across the Delta using local food systems as tools for economic development and better health outcomes. While challenging, the work is also very promising because of rich natural and human resources and a growing desire to embrace change that can begin to bring health and wealth to small, rural Delta communities.
Please stay tuned for stories about the Good Food Revolution project and our Youth Ambassador Corps which empowers young people to be agents for change. Local young people, ages 16-24 in the Good Food Revolution Youth Ambassador Corps will be trained in community organizing, food production, distribution, marketing and ongoing consumer education.
And watch for our exciting upcoming Mobile Produce Market serving Shelby, Mound Bayou and Winstonville to be launched this summer featuring Bolivar County-grown produce. This means members of the Youth Ambassadors Corps will develop work and life skills that we hope will sprout into numerous entrepreneurial opportunities within the local food supply chain.
Thank you very much for your interest and we'll see you at the market!
Dr. Deborah Moore, Board President
Gloria Dickerson, CEO
167 N. Main Street
Drew MS 38737