The Community Grocer is back!
Affordable groceries are back on the menu at the Carlton Public Housing Estate with the return of non-profit social enterprise The Community Grocer’s Carlton Market after securing $45,000 from the City of Melbourne.
Co-chair of The Community Grocer, Dr Rebecca Lindberg, was was on hand on Friday, November 25 to discuss just why it is so vital to be able to resume the market and provide low cost fresh fruit and vegetables to people in need.
“The COVID-19 pandemic forced the closure of our Carlton Market and we are delighted that once again we can ensure the local community, particularly those experiencing disadvantage, are able to put affordable, healthy, fresh, local fruit and vegies on the table,” she said.
“The Community Grocer customers represent 34 different nationalities, with one in five of our customers food insecure and 80 per cent on low incomes.”
Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the funding would allow the important community market to recommence operations for at least the next 12 months.
“Last year, one in three residents within the City of Melbourne experienced a degree of food insecurity, and the cost of living continues to increase, so we’re proud to be playing a major role in bringing The Community Grocer in Carlton back to life,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Everyone deserves to have access to affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food and this will be another location residents can go to source their fresh produce.”
“We’re very much looking forward to being a part of The Community Grocer family as it grows and flourishes over the next year.”
The Community Grocer relaunch came after Cr Dr Olivia Ball brought the motion to her City of Melbourne counterparts, addressing the need to move “beyond food relief to increase food security for everyone”.
“Initiatives like The Community Grocer will play a major role as we progress towards this goal,” Cr Dr Ball said. “We encourage everyone to spread the word The Community Grocer is back in action in Carlton, doing what they do best.”
The Community Grocer hosts three fresh fruit and vegetable markets in public housing estates and community centres across Melbourne and overcomes major barriers for people in accessing fresh food, such as cost and location.
By providing produce at 30 per cent lower prices than supermarkets, they can support up to 500 customers a week across Melbourne.
$5000 of the funding from the council will be put towards Grocer Gift vouchers as part of the Grocer Gift Card program, providing local organisations the ability to offer vouchers to market customers in need.
The Carlton Market runs every Friday at the rear of 510 Lygon St, Carlton between 8am and 12pm. •
For more information: thecommunitygrocer.com.au/carlton