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Central Indiana Food Hub

Purdue Extension aims to connect farmers and consumers with a new marketing partnership, and one extension educator envisions it spreading around the state.

The proposed Central Indiana Food Hub would, in its first stage, provide a virtual marketplace where consumers can connect with farmers to find the products they want and easily order them.

Purdue Extension educator Roy Ballard says the food hub goes a step beyond local co-ops and farmers markets, but is not intended to replace them.

“What this does, it gives those consumers who are not able to access those Saturday morning or Wednesday afternoon farmers markets, it gives them an opportunity to still have produce at their fingertips.

“They can actually go online to find the farmers basically together but then select product of their farmers of choice and pay for that product online and have it delivered probably not to the door at this point but probably to central pickup points.”

He says there are other food hubs developing in the Cincinnati and Terre Haute areas.  And he envisions hubs around the state that can work together.

“One hub servicing another, one hub helping another to source product that, because of a crop failure, they couldn’t have – some interaction and collaboration of the hubs.”

Ballard says the Central Indiana Food Hub is expected to have its online stage up and running by April or May of next year.

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.