Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee launched the Green Bean Project in June 2015 in partnership with Hughes Farms & Produce located in Crossville, Tenn. Learn more about this innovative Farm to Families program project by watching the video below.
Hughes Farm discards 3 million pounds of green beans each year. The beans are perfectly safe for human consumption, but they are snapped or too short for retail standards. Second Harvest saw an opportunity to recover the discarded beans and provide them to families in need. The farmer’s system was augmented to add a third processing line to sort donated beans from sellable beans and waste as well as cool and sanitize the ready-to-eat product.
Produce is expensive for food banks to acquire, but vital to the people they serve. The Green Bean Project is the first of its kind and has the potential to provide more than 1 million pounds of green beans to be shared with Second Harvest and the Feeding America food bank network. This innovative project provides a solution to economically source valuable produce for families in need while reducing food waste.
In it’s first year last season, more than 300,000 pounds of green beans were rescued and distributed to those in need. This season, our goal is to rescue more than 700,000 pounds of green beans. Our first truckload of this seasons green beans arrived at the end of June. Stay tuned to learn more about our progress this season and The Green Bean Project.