ELKHART — The inaugural season of the Seed to Feed program has been very successful according to organizer Dave Hochstetler.
It’s been so successful, in fact, that the organization requires far more volunteers to help with their harvesting than they’ve had recently.
So far, there have already been six pickings from their Goshen and Elkhart fields. The next will take place at 9 a.m. Monday, at the Bullard field on C.R. 17.
Hochstetler belives that with three-quarters of the field still left to pick, they will need at least 30 volunteers to help with the green beans and sweet corn.
Five people showed up to the last picking at the field last week. They were able to pick about 165 pounds of beans in two and a half hours, but Hochstetler said that total is only about a fifth of what is left.
“I think if we get four to five people to pull weeds between the rows and the rest picking, we’ll be good,” Hochstetler said. “It’s a large field and we’ve only picked about a quarter.”
The program, which was started in order to help sustain Church Community Services’ food pantry ministry, has already turned in about 1,000 pounds of beans, tomatoes and peppers from their Goshen field. But there is still significant work to be done.
The produce will no doubt be a boon for CCS, but the long-term goal is to expand the program’s reach.
“Let’s raise money, let’s raise crops, with the goal that we’ll be able to help all the food banks in Elkhart County,” Hochstetler explained.
Any person interested in volunteering to help pick at either the Elkhart field or the field in Goshen on C.R. 36 can contact Hochstetler at 349-4905 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.