The 8th St. Urban Farm is primarily concerned with increasing access to locally grown healthy produce for the economically disadvantaged of our community, to reestablish a deeper connection with our food and with each other that we have lost over time, and to actively and tenderly care for our planet through the practices of regenerative agriculture.
We aim to grow a diverse variety of crops and bring that produce directly to our clients. Because we are a non-profit, we can spend part of our time and capacity growing produce that has a high caloric value for our truly hungry neighbors while also growing food that will improve the health of those who never have to worry about missing a meal. The system and methods we use are mostly unmechanized, using permanent beds, and employing systematic, repeatable processes that allow for quick crop turnover. This allows for the largest amount of food to be grown in a given amount of space.
Most of the produce that we grow is earmarked for use by our primary partner in SSM Health St. Anthony. The Food Pharmacy recently established at the SSM Health Medical Group Family Medicine Center started screening patients for food insecurity in 2021, providing fresh produce and non-perishable food items to those in need. Fruits and vegetables from the 8th St. Urban Farm will serve these patients too. In the spirit of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary's commitment to care for God's creation, addressing food insecurity in Oklahoma County is a priority for SSM Health St. Anthony as part of their larger Community Health Improvement Strategy.
A portion of the remaining produce is donated to support the amazing work of our friends at the Tulakes Food Center and the ROC Food Pantry.
About ten percent of the harvest is sold in our online store. These sales help cover our operational costs so that we can continue to give even more nourishing, organically-grown, food away.
The 8th St. Urban Farm is located on the northeast corner of 8th and Lee in Oklahoma City. The property is owned by SSM Health St. Anthony. As a partner of the 8th St. Urban Farm, SSM Health St. Anthony generously allows the 8th St. Urban Farm to utilize their space
Urban farming is easily confused with community gardening or hobbyist agriculture. What differentiates an urban farm is a certain level of commerce. We are growing products using systematic processes to efficiently yield as much agricultural value as possible from a given plot of land. Then that produce is given or sold from grower to user as opposed to being grown for personal consumption.