How does IFM procure the food that gets distributed out to families?
1. We Buy it
2. Donated to us
3. We Grow it
The result from these innovative procurement strategies is that the MARKET VALUE of the food we provide to ONE individual on their visit is on average 7 TIMES higher than IFM’s COSTS to provide that food.
In other words, IFM will typically spend about $20 on the purchased food going into a set of grocery bags for a client. Also going into those bags are donated food and (depending on the season) produce grown by IFM Gardens. The total market value of ALL the food in the grocery bags will typically be about $150 for that ONE person, or 7.5 TIMES higher than the $20 it cost us.
IFM purchases food from a variety of vendors and food producers. In many cases, we pay steeply discounted prices and when we do have to pay market price, we shop around to get the best deals.
The primary source of our strong buying power comes from our partnership with Placer Food Bank in Roseville and their association with Raley’s Supermarkets and Feeding America.
We also regularly purchase fruits and vegetables from Produce Express (Sacramento), dried goods like beans, rice, and oats from The Danielsen Co. (Chico), and a wide variety of items such as milk, eggs, and meat from Grocery Outlet (Grass Valley, locally owned and operated).
Holiday meats and sides usually come from a combination of our local grocery stores, including SPD, Safeway, Raley’s, Savemart, and Holiday Market.
IFM purchases directly from local and regional farmers and food producers, and also raises funds earmarked for local purchases. Our support of local farmers and small businesses increases our ability to offer fresh nutritious food to our clients, which in turn benefits both the health and economy of our community. Collectively, these efforts are known as the Good Food for All program.
IFM regularly receives donated food from FOUR different sources: Placer Food Bank, local grocery stores, food drives/community donations, and the Sierra Harvest Gleaning Program.
Recent estimates show that IFM receives between $2.5-3 million annually in donated food!
An amazing team of 30-40 volunteer drivers are completing two routes seven days a week to 10 different grocery stores and both Flour Garden bakeries.
Learn more about the volunteer drivers team.
The Sierra Harvest Gleaning program and its team of volunteers bring in 25,000-30,000 pounds of produce each year! Learn more about the Sierra Harvest Gleaning Program.
Want tips on holding your own food drive? Click here.
IFM staff and volunteers partner with a few generous people who donate their garden space, water, and allow for reasonable access. IFM’s Garden Team utilizes funds from grants and donations to purchase materials, tools, soil, seeds, and starts (we also get many gardening items donated from nurseries and from individuals). Some garden sites even have existing fruit trees.
The fresh produce grown and harvested from the IFM Garden sites comes straight to IFM and gets placed into our “produce bags” going out to families. Learn more about the garden sites and volunteer opportunities with the Garden Team.