Earthbound Farm, founded by UC Santa Cruz graduate Drew Goodman and his wife Myra, has been selected as the outstanding philanthropic corporation of 2010 for the Central Coast as part of National Philanthropy Day, Friday November 12.
The grower and marketer of organic produce is a longtime supporter of UC Santa Cruz and was nominated by the university for the award.
The Goodmans started Earthbound Farm in 1984 with a 2½-acre organic raspberry patch in Carmel Valley. Drew Goodman had graduated a year earlier from UCSC with a degree in environmental studies.
Today Earthbound Farm is the largest grower of organic produce in the United States with 150 growers farming 35,000 organic acres, which avoids the use of more than 11 millions pounds of synthetic chemicals annually.
The company supports charities on the Central Coast and beyond, including more than 350 non-profits every year, ranging from a monthly donation to an employee nominated charity, to planting 50,000 trees with American Forests to help offset its carbon emissions. It offers numerous student scholarships such as a graduate student fellowship in environmental studies at UCSC and academic or trade school scholarships to children of employees.
“On behalf of everyone at Earthbound Farm, we are truly honored by this recognition," Drew Goodman said. "An important part of our mission is being a catalyst for positive change, and we get much gratification from being able to support so many worthwhile organizations that are improving the lives of people and working to support a healthy, thriving planet.”
The Goodmans and Earthbound Farm will be honored along with other winners at the National Philanthropy Day awards luncheon Friday at the Inn at Spanish Bay.
National Philanthropy Day recognizes contributions of philanthropy -- and people active in the philanthropic community. Each year, in different regions around the county, awards are given to individuals, corporations, foundations, service organizations, and young people. It is coordinated through Association of Fundraising Professionals.