We are a small Episcopal Church on the banks of the Rappahannock in Port Royal, Virginia. We acknowledge that we gather on the traditional land of the first people of Port Royal, the Nandtaughtacund, and we respect and honor with gratitude the land itself, the legacy of the ancestors, and the life of the Rappahannock Tribe. Our mission statement is to do God’s Will in all that we do.

A Very Productive Village Harvest, May 15, 2024

Below are some of the foods and workers on Tuesday, May 14 unboxing, sorting and bagging the distribution. Thanks to Cookie and Johnny for obtaining the food from the Healthy Harvest Food Bank as well as working with the food, assisted by Elizabeth, Andrea, Lin, Dave, and Catherine and Ben.

May was an explosion in both food provided and clients receiving!  (A nice 188th birthday present for St. Peter’s, consecrated on this day in 1836.)The weather was drizzly but thankfully that didn’t affect the turnout. May featured the largest number of clients, 119 since Nov. 2020 when it was 135. (A year ago the number was 93). Elizabeth reports that “The 119 includes the people Catherine and Jan and Lin pick up for. This may have been more than usual, and we also seemed to have more people from Essex and from Port Royal itself than before.”

The pounds available in May was 1,400 the largest since Dec. 2022 at 1,468  (A year ago in May, 2023  1,143)

Year to date we have  served 487 people compared to 415 last year representing a 17.3% increase. The client total also exceeds both 2022, 447 and 2021, 465.  However, it would be under the pre-pandemic years of 2019,  593, and 2018, 501 (with one month cancelled). Still, it represents an important improvement over the last few years.

In the same 5-month time period, we have provided 6,087 pounds of  food this year compared to 5,421 in 2023 showing a 12.3% increase. Unlike the client trends total food is lower than the previous two years, It is 300 pounds under both 2021 and 2022 when it was 6,300. That’s about 60 pounds less food per month .

Food in May was  34% produce,  47% grocery, 15% meat , 4% bakery). A year ago there was no produce  80% grocery and 20% meat.  The composition in 2024 was closer to that in 2022 with produce of 43%.

The imbalance between clients and food affect the pounds per person.  Pounds per person reflects the relationship between clients and food and show what was available on average for a client.   Pounds per person this year is 12.5 compared to 13.1 last year and lower than the average of 14.0 between 2021 and 2022. Food supplies has not kept up with an increase in clients and year over year grew slower than clients.

The cost for the harvest has been $878 this year compared to $884 last year over 5 months. This decrease is despite the increase in pounds in 2024.  The cost per pound this year has been $0.14 compared to $0.16 in 2023. 2023  was an anomaly as both 2022 and 2021 were $0.13 per pound