Building Equitable Local Food Systems
Prosperity Market is a farmers market on wheels and a food truck in one featuring black farmers, food producers and chefs. We will travel throughout Los Angeles making it easy to support local, black businesses while creating food access in underserved communities. Our mission is to transform our local ecosystem and economy through agriculture, food access, nutrition education, and community partnerships.
What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?
BIPOC- and Women-Owned Businesses
In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?
County of Los Angeles
City of Los Angeles
In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?
Pilot or new project, program, or initiative
What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?
It’s said that a dollar stays in the black community for just 6 hours, yet we have a collective spending power of $1.6 trillion. We are witnessing a big push to support black businesses, however the money leaves our communities just as quickly as it arrives. We don’t have enough essential black-owned businesses, specifically grocery stores. Black farmers have long been marginalized and make up less than 2% of farmers in the nation. They face systemic barriers keeping them from selling in farmers markets and other retailers. 23.5 Million Americans, largely BIPOC, live in “food deserts,” which are areas without access to grocery stores or alternatives for healthy, affordable foods. Our communities are at greater risk of diet related illnesses which can be attributed to the lack of access to healthy food. With impending food shortages, supply chain challenges, and potential recession, now is the time for innovative solutions.
Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.
Prosperity Market is a farmers market on wheels and food truck in one, featuring black farmers, producers, and chefs. We travel throughout LA making it easy to support black businesses while creating food access in our communities. We provide retail, wholesale, and distribution opportunities for farmers & entrepreneurs, helping them scale. We rent our mobile kitchen to chefs, allowing them to easily launch or expand their businesses. We offer retailers an opportunity to source small batch products from local, black-owned businesses. As a mobile market we’re uniquely positioned to address food insecurity. We’re eliminating food deserts while creating economic opportunities for black farmers, businesses, and adjacent industries. We support businesses, eliminate barriers to entry, create jobs throughout the entire supply chain, and make it easy to shop black businesses, creating a ripple effect to stimulate local economies.
Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.
The success of our work will greatly impact Los Angeles County and beyond. Over the 1 year grant period we will create the infrastructure for a sustainable local food ecosystem. Our mobile market will officially launch Feb 2023, allowing us to bring more healthy, affordable foods to more communities. We will also help dozens of black businesses scale their businesses by providing retail & wholesale opportunities, and commercial kitchen access. Long-term, our work will eliminate food deserts in Los Angeles and beyond. We will build multiple trailers that can operate daily in each neighborhood, ensuring that there is always access to healthy foods. This will also create more jobs locally and allow even more black-owned businesses to grow scale. This will affect adjacent industries, stimulating the entire local ecosystem.
What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?
To date we represent over 30 farmers and entrepreneurs with an extended roster of 60+. We’ve hosted 15 pop-up farmers markets and virtual markets. We average 300 visitors per pop-up market and YTD have had over 2,200 pop-up customers. Our average monthly online visitors is currently over 1,700. We have helped 5 of our vendors obtain permits and certifications necessary to operate. We have hosted markets in 10 cities in LA County. We currently have 3 wholesale clients. We’ve also hosted 13 free produce giveaways feeding 6,000+ people. We will continue to measure impact by tracking the amount of businesses, number of certifications they attain, number of retailers, number of locations, number of people we can sign up to SNAP, overall market sales, sales from SNAP, number of customers, number of people fed through free giveaways.
Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?
Direct Impact: 11,000
Indirect Impact: 20,000