The Hens Roost: Grass roots farmers market making a difference

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A local market is connecting us to the produce grown in our community.

The Hens Roost has a vision, a sustainable food system sourced from local producers that can feed everyone in our community.

Jaclyn Allen, the owner of The Hens Roost, grew up around agriculture.

“I’m passionate about just our food system as a whole.  I’m just a proud valley girl born and raised in the San Joaquin, always involved in agriculture.  It seems like all the best is grown here and shipped everywhere else and we really need it here.  So creating the whole wheel of sustainability, using farm fresh produce, making it into food, feeding our actual community with it, those were things that just weren’t happening yet,” said Jaclyn Allen.

Through The Hens Roost, Allen runs what’s called The Apple Core Project, its goal is to feed every hungry person in Kern County.

She’s a business owner with a philanthropic heart whose staff is on board to help.

“We are like a family and we do it form our hearts because you know we really do want to help and we want to effect people in a good way,” said Sunshine Morales, an employee at The Hens Roost.

The Hens Roost may be a small, vegan and locally sourced market, but it’s making big noise and doing big things.

“I think you always set your goals high,” Allen said.

Almost every day of the week you can find Allen preparing food to help feed the homeless in our community, college students who are struggling to make ends meet and more.

“We’re everywhere right now.  I don’t say no very often.  I probably should say no more than I do,” Allen said.

When she says she doesn’t say no very often, its more like she’s never said no.

“We just have partners.  Everyone has so much to give and so much extra.  It’s connecting the dots and getting them to the right people in our community which I think is something there’s a lot of room for improvement.  And I think others do too.  If I’m willing to go with my truck and they don’t really have to do anything but we can get it distributed to hundreds of people in a short period of time, I’m down.  Let’s roll,” Allen said.

If you’re interested in learning more, The Hens Roost is open Wednesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. It’s located at 1916 G Street in Downtown Bakersfield.

You can also find the shop at the Brimhall and Haggin Oaks Farmers Markets on the weekends.

Additional information can be found on The Hens Roost Facebook and Instagram.

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