Derby Street Shoppes and b. good are bringing the farm to the consumer, with a new venture that will plant vegetable gardens next to the restaurant’s Hingham location.
The initiative, which has already taken hold other b. good restaurants in the state, seeks to further the restaurant’s “real fast food” mantra by growing vegetables the restaurant uses on site.
b. good has already served locally raised, house-ground burgers, hand-cut fries, all-natural shakes, and fresh salads since 2004. Operating in eight locations in Massachusetts, the home-grown initiative is just the next step in the organic process.
In Hingham, the store will plant collard greens and tomatoes at three, 10x10 plots at the Shoppe’s Serenity Garden behind Barnes & Noble.
The companies will partner with Green City Growers, which will plant and maintain the garden plots at Derby Street.
The garden has been used to plant vegetables in the past; however, this will be the first year that b. good will be planting produce for its restaurant.
According to Jessie Banhazl, owner, co-founder, and managing director of Green City Growers, the garden is expected to produce approximately 1,000 pounds of tomatoes in the summer months of 2012.
Additionally, the use of the vegetable garden will reduce the restaurant’s carbon footprint by eliminating the need to transport vegetables long distances.
Employees at Derby Street also see it as an educational opportunity for the surrounding community.
“This innovative vegetable garden will also serve as a venue for an educational fundraising event for Camp Harbor View in June. Children and their families will get to see the whole produce-growing cycle, and understand the importance of locally grown food and healthy eating,” the Shoppes said in a press release.
For Jon Olinto, co-founder and co-owner of b. good, the ability to take on such an initiative is thrilling.
“We're really excited for this partnership and grateful that Derby Street Shoppes has given us this space,” he said. “Being able to serve tomatoes that we grow ourselves, right behind our restaurant, is a dream come true.”
Photo courtesy of Derby Street Shoppes