Eastern Market has two new work vehicles to move produce and supplies around the market thanks to Mahindra Automotive North America.
The two Mahindra vehicles, a ROXOX and a Retriever 750 UTV, are collectively named “Mahindra RISES for Good Food Fleet.”
The ROXOR is an all-new off-road vehicle with a steel body on a boxed-steel frame. It will handle a variety of demanding tasks on site The Mahindra Retriever 750 UTV will help provide more than 250 market vendors a quick way to load and transfer goods between stalls.
“Mahindra’s commitment to supporting urban ag producers is inspiring,” says Dan Carmody, president of the Eastern Market Corporation. “We look forward to building a stronger ecosystem for urban producers with support from Mahindra over time and look ahead in the short term to using Mahindra’s cool vehicles to better serve urban ag producers and their customers at Eastern Market on a daily basis.”
Each year about one million visitors come to Eastern Market’s weekly Saturday and Tuesday public markets.
The ROXOR is assembled at the company’s new plant in Auburn Hills, which Mahindra launched in March and is the first new auto plant to open in the region in 25 years. The plant is part of a $230 million investment in Southeast Michigan that also includes a recently-opened warehouse and logistics operation in Pontiac. Over the past two years Mahindra has tripled employment to 250, and there are plans for 400 new jobs and additional investment of $600 million through 2020.
Eastern Market is a recipient of Mahindra Urban Agriculture Grant Program. Since the program’s inception in 2015, Mahindra has donated more than $425,000 in cash and farm equipment to 13 nonprofits in support of sustainable farming and gardening in Detroit and Pontiac.
“Eastern Market’s mission is to improve access to healthy, green, affordable, and fair food choices in Detroit and throughout Southeast Michigan,” says Richard Ansell, Mahindra Automotive North America’s vice president of marketing. “This lines up perfectly with the work our grant initiative was created to support.”
Since 2015, Mahindra’s Urban Agricultural Grant Program has awarded over $400,000 in cash and equipment to support sustainable non-profit farming operations and initiatives in and around the City of Detroit.
Mahindra grants also been responsible for growing more than 1.25 million pounds of produce for Detroiters, building public equipment sheds, creating agricultural job opportunities for developmentally challenged young adults, and distributing more than 200,000 seedlings across 1,600 Detroit gardens.