supporting black farmers

Supporting a More Equitable Farming System

Last Updated on September 17, 2023

A key element of the ButcherBox mission is to transform the food system so that it’s better for the animal, farmer, planet, your family, and our shared communities. Making the complex, multi-faceted food system more equitable for all is one of the ways we think we can make a sizable impact in the present.

But, we also need to acknowledge that we can’t enact change in every way possible; nor should we.

There are existing organizations leading efforts we support, such as advocating for worker welfare or increasing access to conservation funding for new and marginalized farming groups. To that end, we intentionally partner with organizations that share our values and are spearheading further transformation. As Black History Month draws to a close, we wanted to highlight the ways we’ve supported Black farmers through charitable giving efforts in the last year.

Recent Partnerships

In 2021, we supported Black farmers through funding grants distributed by American Farmland Trust and scholarships through Food Animal Concerns Trust. These funding mechanisms supported a wide range of farmers, including Black farmers and other marginalized farmer populations. Additionally, ButcherBox staff supported Black farmers through personal donations to organizations such as the National Black Farmers Association.

This year, we decided to connect with an organization specifically focused on Black farmers and ranchers. We’ve partnered with the National Black Food and Justice Alliance (NBFJA), which represents and gathers Black urban and rural farmers, organizers, and land stewards working together to protect Black land and work towards food sovereignty. In honor of Black History Month, we’re kicking off our partnership with an initial financial contribution to NBFJA and have additional conversations planned to identify further partnership opportunities over the course of the year.

Also, we’ve encouraged our staff to support Black farmer groups at the local, regional, and national levels through our charitable giving platform, Millie Giving, which incorporates a company match. Some of the groups we’ve highlighted to employees include the National Black Farmers Association and the Black Belt Justice Center.

If you’d like to help these causes and ones similar, you can identify Black farmer groups to support near you, via this map from NBFJA. 

What the Future Holds

Ultimately, we wouldn’t be able to achieve our goals without our partners—whether integral members of our supply chain, research partners, or recipients of our charitable dollars. We are excited to highlight existing and new partnerships throughout the year, and, for updated information, you can check our annual Social and Environmental Responsibility report.

Kelly Hilovsky is the Senior Manager of Social and Environmental Responsibility at ButcherBox. She has an MPH from Johns Hopkins and is committed to addressing complex social problems through the lenses of public health and food justice.