Ben Collier is the Co-founder and CEO of The Farmlink Project, a student-founded organization addressing the intersection of food insecurity, food waste, and the environment. Each year, 20-30 billion pounds of fresh produce go to waste in the United States alone; Farmlink is building creative solutions to address food waste. Since April 2020, the team has delivered more than 100 million pounds of farm-fresh surplus fruits and vegetables to more than 400 communities around the country, preventing millions of pounds of carbon emissions as a result.
Ben started Farmlink as a junior at Brown University, and has since graduated with a degree in Applied Mathematics. He was not the only one in school during the early days of the organization. Farmlink began and operated for more than a year as a body of 100 volunteer college students and has since evolved to a hybrid model with 20 full time employees and a base of dozens of college fellows. Ben now lives in Los Angeles, where he works on Farmlink full time with his remote team.
Ben represents Farmlink as a member of the New Profit Health Equity Cohort, exploring access to fresh and healthy food as a key social determinant of health. The Farmlink team has received the Congressional Medal of Honor Society Service Award for their work, and Ben recently accepted the Samuel S. Beard Award for Outstanding Public Service by an Individual 35 & Under.
Long term, Farmlink aspires to put itself out of business. Through surplus redistribution and policy reform, The Farmlink Project is re-building a food system in which every person has access to healthy food with choice, consistency, and dignity.