Magazine article Rural Cooperatives

Central Indiana's First Food Hub Goes "Live!"

Magazine article Rural Cooperatives

Central Indiana's First Food Hub Goes "Live!"

Article excerpt

HOOSIER HARVEST

Market--the first food hub in central Indiana to focus on Indiana-grown products--opened to customers on May 31. The food hub is based in Greenfield and will have several delivery points throughout central Indiana.

Hoosier Harvest Market is a cooperative that is connecting Indiana food producers with consumers who seek locally grown food products. Many of our neighbors in surrounding states have enjoyed such a "local food connection" for several years, and now Hoosiers have the same opportunity to buy local food and to support local producers.

At the outset, Hoosier Harvest Market will be operating as a "virtual marketplace." With the click of a mouse, consumers can order their locally produced foods any time, from the comfort of home or office. The food hub is viewed as a complement to the region's farmers markets.

The co-op's website, www.hoosier harvestmarket.com, explains how to become a member and to place orders directly with producers. It also provides delivery locations. Producers who want to sell their local products can find more information and join through the website.

How does a food hub work?

Farmers/producers update their product availability and prices weekly in an online marketplace.

Consumers shop and fill their "market baskets" with products from the farmers of their choice and pay online.

Farmers deliver their products to an aggregation point for rapid sorting and packaging.

Customized individual market baskets are delivered to a pickup point that the consumer has previously selected. …

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