SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento Food Bank once was one of those standard food distribution centers where bags of processed foods, carbohydrate-laden government commodities and day-old breads and sweets were bagged and handed to people.
One day five years ago, then-new CEO Blake Young had an epiphany that the food was making people fat. So Young set about to remake how food banks operate, taking advantage of Sacramento's location in California's rich agricultural heart.
He and his staff forged partnerships with local farmers, most of them organic, and upped the amount of fresh produce to more than half of clients' food allotment.
Then knowing most of them don't have transportation to grocery stores and the region's many farmers' markets, they moved distribution sites closer to them.