Local food and urban farming aren't hip
They're tradition. New Orleans has a strong agricultural backbone, but our modernized food system has left many local growers behind. New farmers entering the field are often unable to find resources and support to continue the challenging task of growing food in the deep South and subsequently quit or can't support themselves off of farming.
A food system is the path that food travels from a farm to your table. Every step of growing, harvesting, processing, transporting, selling, consuming, and disposing of food involves people. Every community has it's own unique food system. When a food system relies heavily on products from far away then small, local farmers suffer and consumers don't get fresh, local food. For New Orleans to have a healthy food system we need farmers who are economically stable, empowered, and supported. We need consumers who love their farmers and local food. We need city-wide support of green infrastructure that allows for food production in city-limits. And we need you to help.
The ReFresh Community Farm is home to over 30 community gardeners who participate on a weekly basis in growing food as individuals and collectively. ReFresh community gardeners are available to talk 4 days a week at the garden and help teach classes and give tours of the farm.
SPROUT NOLA staff has taught over 150 community classes since 2011, almost all completely free to the community. We offer classes for everyone from home gardeners to expirienced farmers looking to learn new technology.
Pounds Of Food Produced
SPROUT NOLA has grown over 8,000 pounds of community food and has a goal of growing 2,500 pounds in 2018 alone.
We approach the community food system on all levels to create real, meaningful, change that puts the food of New Orleans back in the hands of the people. To build better economic opportunity for farmers in New Orleans we have to address their needs, but also work with community at large to build awareness and support system.
SPROUT NOLA creates technical assistance programs for farmers year-round. We also act as a resource for new and beginning farmers during Volunteer for Veggies, community-building events and assistance preparing to sell at markets. The ReFresh Market, our weekly farmer's market, is low barrier to entry, fee-free and farmer-focused. In 2018 we will be focused on trainings about loan programs, new tools for market gardeners and aggregating produce for farmers.
Our kids classes are the place to be. Join SPROUT for Kids classes the second Saturday of the month with Friends of Lafitte Greenway, or sign up for hybrid cooking/gardening classes with Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine.
We organize community gardeners so that they can do their best work. Our community gardeners at the ReFresh Community Garden are an amazing and talented group of people we get the pleasure of offering support and programming to. We also work to organize the gardeners of Faubourg Lafitte and the Senior Living Center. SPROUT offers seeds, printed materials and organizational help to the gardeners who really make things come together!
SPROUT's weekly farmers market, The ReFresh Market is a fun, affordable and eclectic place to shop. We have veggie vendors, value-added products, cupcakes and prepared food. Join us Mondays from 4-7pm at the corners of Broad and Bienville to put your grocery bucks towards local small businesses. We accept SNAP benefits and Veggie Rx coupons.
We love meeting new gardeners, plant lovers or people with a passion for community food. There are so many skills that this work takes, so please reach out if you'd like to get involved!
Sign Up For a Program
Sign up for one of our programs, or check out the calendar to make future plans.
Come to one of our Volunteer for Veggies times, or sign up to spend concetrated time working on a project or volunteering at the market.
Make a Donation
Make a sustaining donation to SPROUT. We run on donations, grants, and money made from selling veggies and flowers. Your help is integral in our continued programming.