Gather Baltimore is a volunteer-based program, created by OSI fellow Arthur Gray Morgan, which collects surplus produce and more from a variety of sources, including the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar in downtown Baltimore for redistribution to Baltimore’s under-served citizens. Gather Baltimore ensures that this unsold food does not become waste but instead is made available to financially challenged families in communities where fresh healthy food is not readily accessible.
Our mission is two-fold:
First and foremost, we hope to decrease the prevalence of food deserts in Baltimore City by providing healthy food to communities in these areas. As of 2015 in Baltimore, approximately 1 in 4 individuals lives in a food desert. This means that the distance to a supermarket or alternative is more than 1/4 mile, the median household income falls at or below 185% of the Federal Poverty Level, more than 30% of households do not have access to a vehicle, and the Healthy Food Availability Index for local stores is low.
Second, we hope to address the serious issue of food waste. Did you know that approximately 40% of all food in the United States never gets eaten? The environmental, economic and social costs of this waste are huge.
We believe that by turning inefficiencies in the food system to our advantage and salvaging surplus food before it becomes waste, we can address both of these issues.