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Slice of Flint Fresh | Kalamazoo Michigan Commercial Photographer

In the heart of Flint, Michigan, a food hub called Flint Fresh is making a significant impact on the health and nutrition of school children across the state.

Mural at Flint Fresh

As a Michigan commercial photographer with a passion for storytelling images, I recently traveled to Flint Fresh for an ongoing photography project for the Michigan Department of Education and the Michigan 10 Cents a Meal Program.

Man packaging vegetables at Flint Fresh

The Michigan 10 Cents a Meal Program is an initiative that seeks to improve the quality of meals served in schools while supporting local farmers and food hubs. Flint Fresh, as a dedicated food hub, is an essential player in this program, bridging the gap between local farmers and school cafeterias.

Children in lunch line in school cafeteria

The Covid pandemic changed a lot of aspects of our daily lives and culture. Amid the challenges posed by the pandemic, Flint Fresh adapted to the evolving needs of schools. As individual packaging became a necessity, the food hub stepped up to the plate, ensuring that schools could continue to provide fresh, healthy food to students, even with limited kitchen facilities and staff.

Sliced apples in water

A perfect example is these sliced apples...

While I was at Flint Fresh, I saw how these fresh apples were minimally processed for schools' cafeterias, illustrating the invaluable role played by food hubs like Flint Fresh in transforming the school food landscape. The chef at the food hub carefully washed, sliced, and packaged the apples, turning them into convenient portions perfect for little hands. Take a peek at the process below...

Sliced apples in apple processing machine
Man processing apples
Apples being sliced by machine
Apples being sliced by commercial machine
Commercial apple slicing machine
Sliced apples coming out of commercial machine
Sliced apples at commecial processing facility
Man processing apples with commercial machine

Flint Fresh's involvement in the 10 Cents a Meal Program not only benefits schoolchildren but also empowers local farmers. By sourcing their produce from nearby farms, the food hub helps strengthen the local agricultural community, fostering economic growth and sustainability.

local farmer delivering fresh vegetables to food hub

While I was on location, Xiong's Asian Produce from Emmett Michigan delivered a beautiful bounty of collard greens, kale, herbs, and rhubarb to Flint Fresh for distribution.

fresh rhubarb in a crate
fresh basil being delivered to food hub
Fresh herbs and vegetables being delivered to food hub

The impact of Flint Fresh's partnership with the Michigan 10 Cents a Meal Program reaches far beyond school cafeterias. By encouraging healthier eating habits from a young age and supporting local agriculture, this initiative lays the foundation for a healthier and more sustainable future.

Man smiling at fresh delivery of vegetables to food hub

And that puts smiles on all of our faces.

A cat walking through a farm

Want to follow along on my journey from farm to school? Follow my blog or like my Facebook page where I occasionally post links to recent sessions.

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