On January 14, 2015

Black River Produce donates land to food shelf

LUDLOW—The board of directors of Black River Good Neighbor Services in Ludlow announced Jan. 8 the receipt of a major gift from Black River Produce (BRP) of North Springfield. BRP owners Mark Curran and Steve Birge have given the Ludlow-based food shelf the land on which BRP first opened its wholesale business in the late 1970s.

Black River Good Neighbor Services operates a food shelf at 37B Main Street in Ludlow to serve the towns of Ludlow, Cavendish, Mount Holly and Plymouth. The agency has partnered with BRP for many years to help feed the hungry.

“This is quite overwhelming,” said Peter LaBelle, president of the Good Neighbors board. “We are truly grateful for the kindness that Mark and Steve have shown to the people of Ludlow, and especially to our clients.”

Black River Produce began the wholesale distribution of produce in an old barn in a lot off Pleasant Street in the late 1970s. They moved their operations to Proctorsville in 1989 when they outgrew the barn, and then moved to North Springfield in 2005 but still remember their roots in Ludlow.

“We believe in giving back to the community that has been so good to us,” said Steve Birge. “Black River Produce is all about food and we hate the thought that there are people who cannot afford to eat. We just wanted to help Good Neighbors in some way,” he added.

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