With the help of volunteers, Berkshire Bounty has collected and donated

95,364 pounds

of nutritious food, including: fruits, vegetables, meat, fish and dairy during 2020, and

129,685 pounds
in 2019
33,048 pounds
in 2018
8,296 pounds
in 2017

Thank you to all!

Berkshire Bounty

…providing food to those in need

During the coronavirus pandemic, the number of people suffering from food insecurity has materially increased due to school closings, job layoffs and compensation reductions. Berkshire Bounty is using donations to purchase nutritious food for delivery to those in need. Please donate what you can. THANK YOU, and STAY SAFE!

July 8, 2020

The first half of 2020 was a period of great expansion for Berkshire Bounty. We’re now collecting almost 15,000 pounds of nutritious food per month, and delivering that food to those experiencing food insecurity. For the year-to-date, the total is approximately 90,000 pounds, compared to 130,000 pounds for the entire year 2019. Our ability to purchase food has also increased substantially in recent months due to the substantial and regular inflow of donations. Each month, we are now expending over $4,000 to purchase approximately 5,000 pounds of nutritious food that is not typically included in donated food. Given the high demand and due to the ongoing generosity of our donors, we now have the ability and intent to increase food purchases.

As described in previous updates, we continue to bring new programs on line, which is spurring further growth in food collected and delivered. Of particular note recently is our first ever “Pittsfield only” route, where Berkshire Bounty volunteers are picking up produce at Guido’s in Pittsfield and delivering it to the Neighborhood Health Clinic and Berkshire Pediatrics in Pittsfield where the food is distributed to patients who suffer food insecurity.

We just had our second monthly Berkshire Bounty Mobile Food Drive and collected over 1,000 pounds from 20 individual homeowners throughout South County. We’re purposely starting small in order to fully understand and refine this new activity. We intend to significantly expand the Mobile Food Drive by leveraging email lists from partner organizations in the coming months.

Our growth has placed significant demands on our time. The process of effectively managing the growing Berkshire Bounty operation has become difficult for two people. We’ve therefore made the decision to hire our first paid worker. We don’t take this step lightly, and we believe that the net effect will be to make us more efficient and ultimately enhance our growth opportunities and food deliveries. Jenny Schwartz will begin working with us very soon on a part-time basis and assume a significant portion of the daily operational responsibilities of running Berkshire Bounty. Jenny is currently the Food Access Coordinator for the Southern Berkshire Rural Health Network and Fairview Hospital. Her interest and experience in food insecurity, and our previous work together make us very certain that she will do a great job. We will still be involved operationally but will also have the time to properly investigate and implement further growth opportunities.

We are excited about the short-term and long-term future of Berkshire Bounty as we: 1) continue all the activities now underway; 2) plan for the late summer/early fall fruit gleaning operation; 3) investigate potential new food sources and destinations; and, 4) discuss opportunities to work with potential partners.

Featured Articles

Berkshire Bounty is pleased to offer a link to a video describing the great work being done by People's Pantry in Great Barrington.