As part of their V.I. Consumer Food Survey, the V.I. Good Food Coalition is launching its “Good Food Bucks” survey incentive program at the V.I. Agrifest from May 28 through May 30. All U.S. Virgin Islands residents are invited to participate in the survey. The first 400 participants will receive a $5 “Good Food Bucks” voucher after answering a brief series of questions about consumer food preferences. The $5 “Good Food Bucks” voucher can be used to make minimum purchases of $5 from participating vendors, selling plants, produce, and goods in the Farmer’s Market Pavilion.
The V.I. Good Food Coalition team and volunteers will be set up at booth number 39 in the Farmer’s Market Pavilion. The booth is close to the entrance near the school students’ booths and presentations. V.I. Good Food Coalition volunteers will be wearing bright yellow shirts with “VOLUNTEER” and the V.I. Good Food logo printed on front and back of shirts.
The V.I. Consumer Food Survey is part of the V.I. Good Food Coalition’s larger plan to launch a virtual farmer’s market in 2023 for all registered USVI farmers. According to the Coalition, the virtual farmer’s market will be an online market that connects consumers to farmers and increases equitable access to local food and online sales and markets. A mobile app is planned which they hope to customize for farmers’ harvesting, business and e-commerce needs, and extensive technical assistance and training will be provided to farmers. The plan also includes a geo-mapping project called, “FoodFindVI,” which is projected to be completed in June and includes capturing local farms’ locations and data for disaster recovery and planning.
The virtual farmer’s market, the consumer food survey and the FoodFindVI projects are all sponsored by the U.S Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service farmers market promotion program, and in partnership with Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands, Iowa State University, UVI Research & Technology Park, and the St. Croix Foundation.
Virgin Islands Good Food Coalition is a local nonprofit that started in 2012 to support the development of our community’s food system. Their work is driven by the vision of a resilient U.S. Virgin Islands food system that represents our cultural heritage, promotes community, and connects us to our food self-sufficiency. They focus on improving food security, food sovereignty, and agro-sustainability for the USVI. The V.I. Good Food Coalition is a project of the St. Croix Foundation for Community Development and can be found online at www.goodfoodvi.org or on Facebook at @goodfoodvi.