PALM HARBOR, Fla. — Jim Bardwell was jobless just a few weeks ago. He was stuck in quarantine and worried about families in need who had it a lot worse than he did.
The Tampa Bay area entrepreneur is now helping Florida farmers by selling their fresh produce while also helping local families in need.
Bardwell created BuyFarmFood.com. He gathers the best produce from about 12 area farms and sells them through the website. Two big bags of fruits and vegetables go for $20.
People buy Jim’s locally-sourced produce online and then choose a pickup location.
“I kept reading stories about farmers dumping produce and people going hungry,” says Bardwell. “So what a great way to move food from farms into the city!”
Bardwell’s business also has a charitable side. On the website, people have an option to donate produce to Tampa Bay area food pantries and families in need.
On this day, Jim set up a pickup location at Grace Community Church in Palm Harbor.
Led by Pastor Brent Bergman, the church also hosts the Feast Food Pantry, which is benefiting from BuyFarmFood.com.
“We’ve already raised more than four tons of food for people in need,” says Bardwell. “Tampa Bay has really stepped up.”