Chris and Kate are deeply committed to restoring the land they live on and empowering the surrounding community through food sovereignty.
Paxville is currently considered a food desert, meaning that a substantial portion of the community does not have easy access to a supermarket or large grocery store. Kate and Chris are supplying the area with fresh fruit and vegetables through donating to their local food pantry and working towards a goal of having a produce stand on the land they farm on.
Food sovereignty holds that all people, from food producers and harvesters to consumers, have the right to reclaim their power in the food system by rebuilding relationships between people and the land, and between those who produce food and those who eat it, according to the National Family Farm Coalition (NFFC).
“We want to inspire our community to connect with nature and the food they eat,” said Kate. “We are really looking forward to making an impact in our town by offering access to healthy foods, educational workshops, and community events.”
Grateville Acres was awarded $5,000 as part of our statewide Feeding Innovation cohort. Feeding Innovation is a program designed to support entrepreneurs interested in developing a health food business in the food deserts and underserved areas of South Carolina.
Grateville Acres is located on land that has been in Chris’ family for generations. The soil on the farm needs repairing after decades of using commercial grade chemicals to treat the land.
The award money will go towards a well.
“This investment in a well will allow us to increase our capacity to grow crop and restore the land,” said Chris. “We want to support the ecosystem of the land and are taking a holistic approach to farming. It does require more time and research, however we are having fun learning about the different ways we can support the land.”
Currently, Grateville Acres has an abundance of crops from medicinal herbs like yarrow to a variety of vegetables and fruits.
“We are truthfully grateful for the land and the opportunity to be able to feed our community,” said Kate.