Good things come from Jubilee
By Annette Bender
In rural, depressed, Hancock County, Tenn., Jubilee Project has worked since 1991 to provide leadership and faith development for the community as well as recreation and enrichment for youth.
Led by United Methodist missionaries Steve and Diantha Hodges, Jubilee Project also has another purpose: To start cooperatives of persons making food and farm products. In an area where tobacco farmers are struggling to find alternative sources of income, economic development projects such as Clinch-Powell Community Kitchens and Appalachian Spring Cooperative are making a difference, Holston leaders say.
Clinch-Powell Community Kitchens is a shared-use commercial kitchen in which farmers and other rural entrepreneurs can create their own farm and food products. Appalachian Spring Cooperative is an association of about 68 growers and processors who make specialty foods such as sweet potato butter, ginger honey mustard, orange salsa, and barbecue sauce.
Church members who want to support Jubilee can order holiday gift baskets that include a variety of products made by co-op members. A large basket contains seven products "from the hills of East Tennessee" for $49.55, including shipping and handling. A small basket contains three varieties of salsa for $33.70, including shipping and handling. To order, call (423) 733-2095 or visit www.apspringcoop.com.
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