Local Food Connection

Local Food Connection

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The Local Food Connection is a program, led by UMB's Office of Community Engagement, that works to support the economy of neighboring communities in West Baltimore by using institutional purchasing power.

Small but frequent catering purchases are an ideal way to build reliable revenue streams that help neighborhoods retain food businesses that hire local workers, improve local properties, and make food available to community members. And since UMB spends roughly $1 million every year on food purchases of less than $5,000 each, the University community is positioned to make an enormous impact on the local food economy.

To ensure that the program meets community needs, it is evaluated and co-organized by West Baltimore community members and organizations. Participating local small businesses receive access to training, technical assistance, marketing support, and other resources to help them succeed in selling food to buyers like you. To ensure accountability to the community, the program is governed by a coalition of community organizations, anchor institutions such as UMB, and neighborhood leaders.

Funded by the Baltimore Integration Partnership, the program originated as a joint project of the School of Social Work’s Community Action Network and three MSW students studying program management before it was adopted by UMB's Office of Community Engagement.

For more information, please contact:

Brian Sturdivant, Director for Strategic Initiatives and Community Partnerships

Pigtown Local Food Tour

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