According to Feeding America, one in 15 U.S. seniors was food insecure in 2019. Updated numbers aren’t available, but experts believe the problem has only increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Capital Roots thinks its Veggie Mobile can be part of the solution.
The Veggie Mobile, which is basically a farmer’s market on wheels, was started in 2007. It brings affordable local and fresh food into communities known to be food deserts.
“Our programs have seen a really big increase in sales because people can come buy food from us. They like our services. We’re in their communities,” says Marissa Peck, retail markets director at Capital Roots.
Capital Roots recently expanded the Veggie Mobile’s route, including the Edison Senior Apartments in Schenectady. Bill Carney, who has lived in the complex for five years, has quickly became a routine customer.
“There’s people here that don’t drive and disabled people, so this is a Godsend for them. For me, it is, I know that,” says Carney.
Carney is now eating healthier than he ever has before. Capital Roots says that’s its goal.
“It sort of adds this level of humanity to the process, while also allowing them to stretch their budgets even further, ‘cause our food is affordable, and because it’s local and it’s fresh, it’s going to last longer in their fridge,” says Peck.
The Veggie Mobile also provides recipe cards for its customers.