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Colchester woman creates food bank to help with skyrocketing costs for farmers

The owner of Rose 'n' Petal Farm collects food donations from the community which can be used as food for farm animals.

COLCHESTER, Conn. — With inflation causing food prices to skyrocket nationwide, farmers are also feeling the extra pinch in their wallets. 

To help alleviate some of these costs, a Colchester woman came up with a solution and since then, it has saved farmers a lot of money.  …

"For a 50-pound bag, you’re looking at anywhere from 19 to 30 dollars depending on the kind of feed you get," said Timothy Francis, owner of Little Rascals Farm. 

For the past several months, paying for animal feed has been financially stressful for Francis. 

He has a big family to feed ranging from pigs who will give birth soon to goats to cows. 

Luckily, some of that financial burden has been lifted off his shoulders thanks to the food bank at Rose 'n' Petal Farm. 

"I got a lot of pumpkins from Donna that were donated by people and I fed all the pumpkins out to the pigs," added Francis. 

Donna Rosenblatt is the owner of Rose 'n' Petal Farm and she, herself owns a family of female chickens. 

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"Most of my feed prices have raised up to 60 percent and some over 100 percent," said Rosenblatt. 

Just four months ago, Rosenblatt started collecting food donations from the public. 

"I really don’t want to have it end up in a landfill and just cause pollution in our town. I heard that when the rotting process happens, it creates bad things for the environment. This way, the animals can get helped out, the farmers are helped out," said Lauren Olsheski of Colchester. 

Food donations consist of expired, unused, or unwanted canned goods, beans, cereals, or pasta. 

Normally, the food would be tossed out since it is not legal for humans to eat but Rosenblatt said it is perfectly safe and healthy for farm animals. 

"Crackers are good for chickens and ducks. Pigs will eat anything and so will goats for the most part," added Rosenblatt. 

If the date is past and cannot be donated to the human food bank, Rosenblatt hopes the community will consider donating these cans and boxes to her Livestock Food Bank. If a box or bag has been opened, it will be accepted. 

Items accepted include: 

  • Canned or jarred vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Beans
  • Soups
  • Powdered milk 
  • Dried beans
  • Raw oatmeal
  • Quinoa, barley
  • Lentils
  • Couscous
  • Microwave popcorn
  • Crackers, cookies
  • Pasta
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Flours 
  • Cornmeal. 

Items not accepted include: 

  • Frozen or refrigerated foods and 
  • Old, dead vegetables and fruits. 

The food bank is located at 348 Westchester Road in Colchester. 

Carmen Chau is an anchor and reporter at FOX61 News. She can be reached at cchau@fox61.com. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.


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