Forgotten Harvest is going entrepreneurial with its own subsidiary that is aimed at growing the local food economy.
Hopeful Harvest, a C corporation, will provide work space, mentoring services, and a commercial kitchen to local food startups looking to grow. The idea is to use the revenue generated from Hopeful Harvest to support the operations of the Forgotten Harvest, the nation's largest fresh-food rescue operation.
"This is an additional way for us to support our operation," says Chris Nemeth, senior director of social enterprise for Forgotten Harvest
. "Every penny of profit from Hopeful Harvest
will be donated to Forgotten Harvest."
The Oak Park-based operation will be based out of Forgotten Harvest's main facility. It will provided space for full-service food processing, packaging, and a 750-square-foot commercial kitchen. Marketing and consulting services will also be available.
Hopeful Harvest, which is starting off with a staff of six people, has already lined up six local food startups to take advantage of its services, including McClary Bros Vinegars
, Slow Jams Jam
, and Beau Bien Fine Foods
. Five more are also ready to join the Hopeful Harvest operations.
"Realistically, by the end of our first full year we hope to have between 25-30 clients,” Nemeth says.
Source: Chris Nemeth, senior director of social enterprise for Forgotten Harvest
Writer: Jon Zemke
Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.