IGI purchases Kitchen Porch

Island Grown Initiative announced the organization's acquisition of Kitchen Porch on Monday. — Jeremy Driesen

Island Grown Initiative (IGI) announced Monday that the organization has taken over ownership of Edgartown’s Kitchen Porch in an effort to enhance its growing food equity network. 

Formerly owned and operated by caterer and IGI co-founder Jan Burhman, Kitchen Porch will continue to serve as a commercial kitchen where IGI staff and volunteers “can clean and store gleaned vegetables and prepare and freeze soups, stews, and nutritious meals,” Monday’s release states. 

“This is one of those win-win scenarios,” IGI executive director Rebecca Haag said in Monday’s statement, “the double challenge of the rising construction costs coupled with ongoing wastewater issues made building prohibitive, yet we desperately needed a permanent, commercial kitchen space to meet demand … We now have a year-round commercial kitchen for IGI’s food equity programs without facing a long and expensive building project.” 

Per the statement, through the organization’s Food Pantry, IGI is able to serve over 3,200 residents who are currently registered for the program that helps to provide both a wide variety of groceries in addition to prepared meals. 

With help from the newly added kitchen space, the release stated, “IGI plans to prepare more than 60,000 meals distributed through the Food Pantry, Councils on Aging, schools, churches, and other community-based organizations.” 

The transaction, which was completed Dec. 12, allows Burhman to “find ways that I can work with the community and give back, and shift my attention to a more regenerative life,” according to the release. Moving forward, “the plan is to live simpler, teach, and write about the process of learning these models, and to support the work of IGI in any way I can,” Burhman said.