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Episode 14: Feeding The Community with Bret Sill

A special Thanksgiving episode of the Almond Journey Podcast details the incredible efforts of Bret Sill and the Morning Star Fresh Food Ministry who is feeding the needy in their community over the holiday and throughout the year. 


This episode travels back down to Bakersfield, California, where the show welcomes back Bret Sill who listeners heard from on episode 008. The podcast revisits Bret for a bit of a different story, one that’s perfect for the Thanksgiving holiday and a chance to share a great story of an almond grower impacting his community.

In 2013, Bret felt led to be of service to the people of Bakersfield. He felt called to deliver fresh food directly from growers to people in need of quality food. Since that time, Morning Star Fresh Food Ministry has grown tremendously and served thousands of people.

I knew how to buy, I knew how to pack, I knew how to distribute and just to do that for a food ministry and that we could do everything fresh, with the growers that I knew and the connections that I had…it was really just taking what I knew and saying let's use it for something better and something for our community.
Bret Sill

In Today’s episode:

  • Meet Bret Sill, founder of the nonprofit Morning Star Fresh Food Ministry.
  • Explore the successes and good that Bret is able to share with his community.
  • Discover how producers and others can contribute to this worthy cause.
We want to give a hand-up instead of a handout. And then that way they have some skin in the game and they want to contribute back to society… So that's what's really exciting to see, a person that was receiving a box and now they're doing so well that they're contributing back to the ministry.
Bret Sill
ABC Update

A few years ago, the Almond Board created a video called “The Mummy Shake” which was a song about winter sanitation set to the music of the song “Monster Mash.” The popularity of “The Mummy Shake”  led to an annual competition of growers submitting videos of them dancing or acting to the song.

Senior manager of industry relations and communications Jenny Nicolau says the contest is back this year, but a little different from years past. The 2021 Mummy Shake Contest is a lyrics rewrite challenge where industry members can create winter sanitation-themed words to a popular holiday song. The deadline for The Mummy Shake Holiday Song Competition is Friday, December 17th.

The Almond Journey Podcast is brought to you by the Almond Board of California. This show explores how growers, handlers, and other stakeholders are making things work in their operations to drive the almond industry forward. Host Tim Hammerich visits with leaders throughout the Central Valley of California and beyond who are finding innovative ways to improve their operations, connect with their communities, and advance the almond industry.

ABC recognizes the diverse makeup of the California almond industry and values contributions offered by its growers, handlers, and allied industry members. However, the opinions, services and products discussed in existing and future podcast episodes are by no means an endorsement or recommendation from ABC. The Almond Journey podcast is not an appropriate venue to express opinions on national, state, local or industry politics. As a Federal Marketing Order, the Almond Board of California is prohibited from lobbying or advocating on legislative issues, as well as setting field and market prices.