May 16, 2014 5

My Summer Collaboration with Philly FoodWorks

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Over the past few years I’ve been a CSA shareholder in a cooperative of 80+ rural farms located in the lush farm land just outside Philadelphia. And although this experience has been nothing short of life-changing, this spring and summer season I’m ready to shake things up a bit.

I’m am teaming up with Philly FoodWorks and this is a little story about them, me and what we’re planning on doing together.

Over the past five years I’ve learned a lot living in the city of Philadelphia. Some days the skies are so bright, with abundant opportunity and growth shining over the city. Other days the road here in Philly is rough and tough, rocky to say the least. Some days I want to give up on it all, pack up my belongings to seek a slower pace, a safer haven. But through all the ups and downs, I’m still craving a deeper connection to this city; I want to embrace the good, the bad and all the little in-betweens. I don’t know how much longer I’ll have the privilege of living in such a great big urban community, but for now I want to experience it and partnering up with Philly FoodWorks is the best way I know how.

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Philly FoodWorks, founded by Dylan Baird, Jamal Bell + Ryan Witmer, unites producers and consumers to build a food system that increases access to good food for all Philadelphia residents. It’s connecting new and old generations of farmers and entrepreneurs with consumers that care about protecting the regional economic and cultural vibrancy that small producers create. All of their produce and products for sale are sourced within a 150 mile radius of the city with a lot of it being grown within the city limits. For a complete list of the Philly FoodWorks suppliers, click here.

One of the reasons I was instantly so excited to partner with Philly FoodWorks this season was their commitment to revitalizing Philadelphia and bettering the urban communities as a whole through urban farms +  community development programs. Last week I had the opportunity to visit one of the urban farms it sources produce from, Neighborhood Foods. Tucked away in the heart of West Philadelphia, Neighborhood Foods is as exactly how it sounds – the heart and soul of the neighborhood, aka a magical urban oasis.

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I met co-founder Dylan and an integral advisory member of the urban farm, Lisa on a stormy spring evening. Neighborhood Foods is quaintly tucked deep into West Philly. The dark clouds were looming over our heads and the breeze was getting cooler and cooler with each gust. Let’s just say I was a little out of my element. West Philly isn’t a neighborhood I visit often, maybe never at all with the exception of University City, which I now understand really isn’t West Philly at all.

Moments into my visit Dylan and Lisa made me feel so at home, so at ease. I just wanted to learn and soak in as much as I could in the short two hours I was there. These photos are of my trip, I truly cannot wait to get this CSA started. My first delivery is next week, I’ll be posting a new recipe with my locally sourced ingredients, so stay tuned + get connected with Philly FoodWorks on Facebook, Instagram+ Twitter.

If you live in the Philly area and you want to support local agriculture, get boxes of fresh produce + local products sent your way each week and be a part of something pretty major, sign up for your Philly FoodWorks CSA, here.


{{disclaimer}} This post is in partnership with Philly FoodWorks. This helps support the continued growth and development of my site. All opinions are my own.

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With Food + Love © 2016 | All photos + words belong to Sherrie Castellano -- they cannot be used or distributed without permission.