Urban farm bears fruit in Raleigh
Posted May 1
Amid the big buildings and old houses in downtown Raleigh, hope has taken root on a piece of land along Hoke Street.
That’s where the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle has its urban farm, a place for food production and agricultural training within the city.
“We have cauliflower, carrots, more cauliflower,” said Lester Clay, showing off his crops.
He is one of the success stories from the Food Shuttle's urban farm training program. Last year, he learned the basics of urban farming. Now, he’s using what he learned to build his own landscaping business.
“We're able to grow really beautiful, healthy vegetables that we're making available to the community,” program manager Sun Butler said.
Will Allen is a nationally recognized urban farming pioneer based in Milwaukee. He is visiting Raleigh to teaching others how to grow fresh, healthy food in their own neighborhoods.
“We have a long way to go to get the production levels before we really make a difference and the transformation starts to happen,” he said.
The Hoke Street farm is responsible for one big transformation in Clay, who enjoys watching the fruits of his labor feed the community.
“I didn't know any of this stuff before I started, so it's been a real blessing,” Clay said. “It brings the community together toward one common goal, that's just love. Just making sure their neighbor is all right. That's a beautiful thing.”
The Food Shuttle hopes to open a farm stand on Hoke Street later this month to sell the produce they're growing. They also run a community garden, giving neighbors land to plant their own crops.