Healthy Choice Food Pantry
UCOM is the ACCESS key resource center for Southwest Kent County serving Grandville, most of Wyoming, and a portion of southwest Grand Rapids. UCOM operates one of the largest pantries in the city. In 2016 UCOM provided over 26,000 food services to more than 9000 individuals, contributing enough groceries to our neighbors for over a quarter of a million meals.
As a client choice pantry and one of the largest key resource centers in West Michigan, UCOM is dedicated to making sure those in need of food assistance never have to go without. People living in the UCOM service area are able to access the pantry once a month and receive a five to seven-day emergency supply of healthful and delicious food. Committed to personal empowerment, UCOM has encouraged our clients to select their own food since 2003.
To better enable clients to select balanced and nutritious food choices UCOM consulted with MSU extension in Grand Rapids to create a food pyramid. With the USDA's decision to phase out the food pyramid in favor of the new food plate, UCOM decided to switch our shopping aids as well. Our new shopping aids contain the same information as our prior pyramid but with an updated look that reflects the current USDA version.
In October of 2010 MSU Extension evaluated the UCOM food pantry using criteria from the USDA. UCOM met or exceeded all of its requirements to be considered a Pyramid Pantry and received a certificate of recognition now on display. Says Necia Knuchel MSUE dietetic intern, "I would like to congratulate you for working to provide healthy food options for your clientele."