Forest Lake Fresh

What is Forest Lake Fresh?

Forest Lake Fresh is a program designed to help the Family Pathways Food Shelf in Forest Lake ensure that they have an adequate supply of fresh and frozen vegetables and fruit for their clients during times when prices are up, donations are down, or when there just is not enough.

Why is this important?

  • Food insecurity is defined as lack of access, at times, to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members, and limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate foods.
  • We all know that we need to eat healthier, but for many, healthy and nutrient dense foods are not accessible, due largely to the cost associated with eating healthy. This can be seen in the disparities that exist between weight and income level.
  • The short growing season in Minnesota also lends itself to produce being more costly and harder to come by during the winter months.
  • This extra source of funding would be used to help ensure that area families have a regular, diverse, and fresh source of produce to help keep their families moving in a healthier direction.

By the Numbers

  • In 2014 in Washington County, an estimated 17,600 residents were considered food insecure.
  • In the 2015-2016 fiscal year, Family Pathways Food Shelf in Forest Lake served over 3,000 families – 3,085 to be exact – and 2,459 members of those families were children, 4,175 were adults, and 837 were seniors for a total of 7,471 people that Family Pathways helped ensure had enough to eat. For perspective, that is 314,693 pounds of food distributed from just one food shelf.

Forest Lake Fresh was created by Health UP to help address food insecurity in Forest Lake because we recognize that “getting healthy can, at times, feel out of reach.” This program will help remove barriers and help bring healthier living within reach of all of our community members. Helping people reach their health goals is key Health UP’s mission.

Let’s help our residents in need make the healthy choice, the easy choice…year round.

For questions on Forest Lake Fresh call Jamie Muscha at (651) 209-9723 or Judy Weiler at 651-257-8489. For questions on Family Pathways, contact Lena Nelson at 651-464-2098.