Future Fresh Farms of North Charleston has acquired 20 acres of land to support its cooperative farm and grocery store operation that aims to increase food accessibility in the community | provided

North Charleston nonprofit food justice organization Fresh Future Farm (FFF) will scale up its current food production operation with a new 20-acre rural site at a yet-to-be-announced location. 

The nationally recognized organization currently operates as a neighborhood grocery store and cooperative farm. It leases its current location at 2008 Success Street from the City of North Charleston. The site will be fully operational as long as possible, North added, until the city needs the land back. 

“We plan to stay here as long as we can,” she said. 

FFF initiated a Kickstarter campaign in 2019 to raise funds to purchase the Success Street location, but couldn’t come to an agreement with the city. A Jan. 23 Instagram post from FFF said that it has leased the land from the city on a month-to-month basis since October 2022.

“As residents, our commitment to food justice for our North Charleston neighbors has never wavered,” said Germaine Jenkins, co-founder of FFF’s urban operation said. “Kickstarter support in 2019 gave us the financial capacity to buy the Success Street property, but we couldn’t translate community support into an agreement with the city to close. 

“Those crowdfunding dollars are still in the bank and we hope, with backer support, to apply them to infrastructure needs at the new space.”

New location will generate more food

FFF Co-director Tamazha North told the Charleston City Paper that the organization is keeping the new location of the cooperative farm site “confidential at the moment.”

“There are just a couple of things that need to be developed there before we’re ready to share it with the public,” North said. 

FFF has increased food accessibility within the Chicora-Cherokee neighborhood in North Charleston since it started in 2014. The Chicora-Cherokee neighborhood is one of 11 food deserts in the Charleston area, meaning residents have very limited access to nearby grocery stores. 

North said the new land will position FFF to grow more produce and provide more resources to share with the community. 

“The cooperative farm is going to give us the opportunity to grow on a much larger scale than we have before,” she said. “We want to keep the same concept and just magnify it on the 20 acres. So, all the crops and everything that we grow here will be grown there. Hopefully in the future, we’ll be able to employ more folks than we’re able to now.” 

Right now, the farm is cultivating winter crops such as collard greens, brussels sprouts, cabbage, green onions, spring onions, green garlic, different types of kale and a variety of herbs, including fennel, rosemary, mint and cilantro.  

Keep an eye on the Fresh Future Farms social media (@freshfuturefarms) to learn more about coming plans for the new site and future events, such as an in-person gardening class in February. 

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