Food Deserts: A Wide Open Market

Zero competition in a market usually means no one has been able to figure out how to make money in it. When it comes to building a local foods business in underserved areas, few have really tried. But Bruce Manns is using SPIN-Farming to figure it out, and he’s made impressive progress in three years.

Urban farming is hot, so finding land and funding farm startup weren’t hard. With Bruce’s gardening background, growing high quality food wasn’t either. So far this tracks the stories of lots of SPIN farmers.

But instead of setting up a stand at either one of the city’s three well-established indoor farmers markets, Bruce is bringing his crops to those who want fresh food, have no way to get to it, and are really strapped for cash. His 3 point business model: professional grade, predictable, affordable. His 3 success factors: respect, pragmatism, team work. As he says, “It’s not a bad thing to be a business person in the inner city.”

Find out how York Fresh Food Farms is growing veggies, sales and respect in neighborhoods that have been running low on them for quite a while here.