OAKLEY, Idaho — Cranney Farms in Oakley was having an exceptionally good year in the potato industry prior to COVID-19. Since the pandemic, the farm has lost a large amount of business.
A large portion of the potato industry goes hand in hand with the food service industry, and with a vast majority of restaurants closed, there has been very limited clientele for the farm.
While supermarkets are an alternative for profit, they can only take so many potatoes at one time to support their partners. So, the farm decided to do what they felt what was right in such a time of uncertainty: distribute potatoes for free for their neighbors and surrounding communities.
The farm has set up shop in a lot just one mile away from their main office where a mountain of potatoes is free for the taking. CEO Ryan Cranney had this to say about the project:
"I wanted to reach out and be able to help people that needed food or needed some help financially, and that would be a little way I could help them. I had no idea it would have as much as a response as it did."
People from both in-state and out-of-state have traveled to get their hands on the potatoes.
The public has been grateful for what the farm has done as well and want them to know, when the pandemic is done, they will do whatever they can to help them and their business.
With thousands of pounds of potatoes available, the farm is expecting an economic impact of some sorts but have done their best to remain positive. They know what they're doing is an important service for many, whether it be providing food for someone in need or simply allowing a family to get out of the house for a time.