Joan Hartley

State Senator

Joan Hartley

Chief Deputy President Pro Tempore

An Independent Voice

May 14, 2019

Senator Hartley Commemorates Groundbreaking of Waterbury’s First Food Hub


State Senator Joan Hartley speaks Monday at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Brass City Regional Food Hub in Waterbury.

WATERBURY, CT –State Senator Joan Hartley (D-Waterbury) joined fellow legislators Representative Jeffrey Berger (D-Waterbury) and Representative Geraldo Reyes (D-Waterbury), Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewicz and Waterbury leaders Monday to commemorate the opening of Waterbury’s first food hub. The Brass City Regional Food Hub, located on Mill Street, will host a combination market, greenhouse and food-washing facility, not only providing farms with an area to wash produce but also creating new access points to fresh, healthy food for residents.

“I can’t tell you what a thrill it is to be here this morning,” said Sen. Hartley. “It was, is and continues to be an incredible project to work on. How we eat is how we live, and this food hub’s going to make fresh fruit, locally grown, available to a community that did not have that. There are conversations on working with community colleges’ culinary schools and local bodegas – basically, to touch every part of this community, also becoming a manufacturing center. We’ve been up, and we’ve been down, but this is all about the grit of Waterbury.”

Sen. Hartley further lauded Bysiewicz and the entire Waterbury delegation, including Rep. Berger and Rep. Reyes, for their work. Waterbury Mayor Neil O’Leary, among others, credited Sen. Hartley for her extensive work on the project.

In 2015, Brass City Harvest received funding from the United States Department of Agriculture to design its regional food hub, and since then, stakeholders including the State of Connecticut Bond Commission and the State Farm Viability Program have joined local leaders to coordinate its creation. Brass City Regional Food Hub is the first food hub in Connecticut, helping farms and Waterbury residents come together to support businesses, expand access to healthy food and help train workers to succeed in agriculture and the food industry.