Food Systems

Local farms, healthy food


Community-based organizations across Michigan are collaborating on operationalizing community-driven efforts to create a resilient, equitable, accessible and environmentally sustainable food system. 

In partnership with Michigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems, the Michigan Good Food Fund invests in food and farm entrepreneurs across the state, offering flexible financing and tailored business assistance that support vibrant, equitable communities. This support has been critical to help small farms, food trucks, restaurants and food processors, who often struggle to access funding from traditional banks, grow and thrive. 

The Michigan State Center for Regional Food Systems and Michigan Good Food Fund are also working to highlight community-driven efforts to make the food system more accessible and equitable. 

One such program is The Farm at Trinity Health, located in Ypsilanti and Pontiac Michigan, is one example of how health systems can support communities through local food. Led by manager Jae Gerhart, The Farm aims to tackle health issues caused by poor diets by providing fresh produce through programs like the Farm Share initiative. Gerhart’s team has achieved notable success, generating revenue for partner farms, distributing thousands of food boxes, and donating produce to patients and providers. 

Their future goals include expanding their impact by incorporating produce prescriptions and conducting research to demonstrate the health benefits of their work. Through collaborations with healthcare providers and community groups, they strive to address food insecurity and improve health outcomes for all. Ultimately, The Farm at Trinity Health illustrates the positive effects of locally sourced, nutritious food in building healthier and stronger communities.

Discover the inspiring efforts of Jae Gerhart and her team as they strive to empower communities, combat food insecurity, and improve overall well-being through their innovative programs.


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