Matthew 25's Farmers' Market bringing fresh produce to a 'food desert'

Published: Jun. 4, 2019 at 3:34 AM CDT
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Non-profit Matthew 25 is looking to address what they say is a food desert in one part of Cedar Rapids. They are bringing back their farmer's market at their Urban Farm located at 437 G Ave NW.

Organizers said people living in the area don't have many options for groceries or fresh produce.

The market is every Thursday from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. from now until October. They sell things grown at their farm like tomatoes, rhubarb and asparagus. There are also four local vendors and a brick oven to make woodfire pizza.

Organizers said grocery stores tend to go where they can make the most money, so the lack of options here to get fresh produce hurts the neighborhood.

"Eighty-five percent of the kids in this area are on free and reduced lunches, and that also corresponds to about 60% of the kids being overweight or obese,” said Clint Twedt-Ball, the executive director of Matthew 25. “So we knew there was a need for fresh, local food in the area."

Matthew 25 expects more than 100 people to show up to the market every week. The market does accept EBT and SNAP benefits. Produce is sold at half price for people below a certain income threshold.

Besides food, there are games and yoga classes. It's not just for people living in the neighborhood, they want everybody to come and get to know each other.

to learn more about the market.