As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, New Hampshire-based lef Farms continues to do its part by providing hard-working front-line healthcare workers across New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey with more than $250,000 in baby greens over the past six months – a total of 50,000 meals.
“We’ve always seen ourselves as community advocates first and foremost”, begins lef Farms founder, Henry Huntington. “The whole reason we started lef Farms was to reduce our community’s reliance on food sources outside our region by offering healthy local alternatives. We feel a healthy community is one that grows and prospers together. Our ability to bring fresh greens to those logging countless hours to fight this pandemic is just another way to keep our community healthy and strong.”
“Front-line heroes are pulling 12- sometimes 16-hour work days. For weeks!”, exclaims lef Farms Sales Manager, Donald Grandmaison. “When you put in those kind of hours, your meals end up a second thought. Our team felt a strong call-to-action. As our local heroes poured themselves into helping our community, we wanted to give them the fuel to continue their amazing work”, finishes Grandmaison.
What began in March as a casual conversation about the country’s incredible pandemic relief efforts led to lef taking a more aggressive approach in its own region. lef immediately reached out to its business partners to gauge interest in supporting healthcare workers. In a matter of just hours, lef secured thousands in financial support from key vendors, like International Paper, Macaran Printed Products, Inline Plastic, and its parent company, Pleasant View Gardens – demonstrating the willingness of the businesses community to rally for this cause.
With support from business partners, lef also contacted one of New England’s top grocers, Stop & Shop, joining forces and providing fresh greens directly to dedicated front-line workers. Through the Stop & Shop’s “Feeding the Frontline” program, lef provided 30,000 servings of fresh baby greens to medical first-responders at Mount Sinai and Long Island Community Hospital in New York, Pascack Valley Medical Center in New Jersey, and Boston Medical Center and Children’s Hospital.
Given the success of the Stop & Shop partnership, lef turned its focus closer to home by inviting local New Hampshire food suppliers to join in. Without hesitation, Pete & Gerry’s added their organic eggs to the mix. And, like a series of dominos, other suppliers fell in line, like Contoocook Creamery, who donated fresh milk. Before too long, a small team of farmers were assembled to lift the spirits of healthcare providers and motivate them to continue their good fight. This local program provided an assortment of local products for 1,000 healthcare professionals at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Centers (DHMC) throughout New Hampshire.
“With several special events throughout the month of August, our dedicated staff was treated to fresh greens, milk, and eggs to keep them going”, notes DHMC media relations manager, Audra Burns. “Plus, lef’s efforts mesh perfectly with the hospital’s own internal wellness and healthy eating. We couldn’t be more grateful”, finishes Burns.
“While the pandemic continues, we’re proud that our farm and other businesses can work together to give back to those who are giving so much. For them, it’s an outward demonstration of community support. A strong a message of hope. And that’s exactly what this country needs”, smiles lef’s Henry Huntington.
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