Driving north from Baltimore, into Baltimore County and toward the Pennsylvania line, the rolling hills and lush landscapes give one the impression that the soil is fertile.
County leaders met last week at the Center for Maryland Agrigulture and Farm Park to break ground on a new greenhouse that will be used to produce fresh and locally grown veggies not only for school cafeterias but for homeless shelters and food banks, the Baltimore Sun reports.
The site should be in production by the spring of 2018, officials said, with a goal of 50 tons of fresh vegetables in the first year, increasing to 250 tons annually within three years.
It’ll cost less than a quarter million dollars to build, and the seedlings grown in the greenhouse can be transplanted to the surrounding fields, the Sun notes.
“Believe it or not, there are many people who work full time, and yet they struggle to put decent food on the table,” County Executive Kevin Kamenetz was quoted as saying. He’s planning to run for governor next year, according to some political prognosticators.
Even if that’s just political hot air, Mr Kamenetz is correct, at least in Baltimore County. About 12 percent of the people who live in the county are “food insecure,” Feeding America noted, which is a national network of food banks that includes the Maryland Food Bank.
Statewide, more than 680,000 people are struggling with hunger, and 220,000 of them are children, Feeding America said.