1 in 4 children are
food insecure

Cultivate’s backpack program provides hope to food-insecure children in our community. Sponsor a child for just $35 a month!


Pounds of Food Rescued


Meals Distributed in 2020


Meals Served Weekly to Elementary Schools


Volunteer Hours since June 2020


New Food Donors Acquired in 2020

Our Mission

Cultivate is devoted to organizing our community resources to fight hunger through food rescue.

Defining Food Rescue

Our partnership with Notre Dame and other local food suppliers provides a great opportunity to feed members of our community who are food-insecure. Our food rescue program fills the gap between potentially wasted food and the people and organizations that need food the most.

Volunteer With Us

Perfect for groups! Bring your team and help package several hundred meals in just a few hours. Learn more here:

We are celebrating ONE Million pounds of food rescued!

Cultivate Food Rescue Wins Nonprofit of the Year Award 

Cultivate Food Rescue Wins Nonprofit of the Year Award from Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce

Elkhart, IN. (March X, 2020) – Cultivate Food Rescue, a local nonprofit dedicated to reducing food insecurity and increasing environmental sustainability in communities in Elkhart, St. Joseph and Marshall counties, has been awarded Nonprofit of the Year by the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce. Each year, this award is granted to a local nonprofit who demonstrates an innovative product or service, growth, community involvement and other unique factors.


“I’ve had children, and now families, thank me (like I did something) for the food for the weekend. One mom was crying so she was happy. I had a little girl in second grade proudly take two bags home with her (we had extra) and she was so happy to be able to provide food for her family.”

Quote from a teacher at one of the schools.

Plymouth Community Schools has a student that comes from a very large family. Each week his parents work hard to provide basic necessities. Before Cultivate, this student ate a small dinner that might consist of canned soup and a granola bar and some evenings even skipping meals when money was extra tight. Once this student began receiving CULTIVATE meals each week they couldn’t wait to unzip and see what meals they had in their Cultivate backpack! Without these meals, this student would miss out on the basic necessities such as protein, fruits, and vegetables.

See Cultivate on the Rachael Ray Show!

Did you ever dream that your neighborhood food rescue charity would be on national television? We didn’t either! We’re so grateful for partners like our friend Natalie Bickel with Elkhart Community Schools, who connected us with the Rachael Ray Show and went to New York to film it with our own Randy Z., co-founder and general manager. 

Cultivate Culinary was featured on Elkhart County’s “In the Spotlight” podcast.

Listen to hear founder Jim Conklin discuss how we partner with other Not-For-Profits to feed food insecure children – also featuring Mark Mikel from Family Christian Development Center and Darlene Anderson from the Elkhart Chamber Leadership Academy Team.

Goodbye Randy

Goodbye Randy

After six years of service and devotion to our mission, Co-Founder and Director of Operations,...