N.C. sustainable food policy council bill approved!

August 8, 2009 at 9:13 am 4 comments

A statewide grassroots effort to support a sustainable food system for North Carolina won a huge victory in the state legislature this week when a bill to establish a state Food Policy Council was voted out of committee and cleared the House and Senate at the eleventh hour. 

The 27-member advisory council will study how to: increase local foods served in public schools, make local foods available to people receiving public assistance, make food stamps available at farmers’ markets, encourage community and backyard gardening, and other issues related to local foods. The board will prepare a report on its progress for the legislature in October.

North Carolina is considered a leader in the sustainable farming movement with many farmers, chefs, advocates, and entrepreneurs working to encourage the production and consumption of locally grown food. The food policy council will take this to the next level, providing valuable infrastructure to connect farmers more easily to consumers, to bring sustainable food to schools, hospitals and other institutions, to make it more economically viable for farmers and more affordable and accessible to all consumers.

“A lot of folks worked very hard to make this happen and in the end, the bill brought together a lot of divergent partners and voices which bodes well for the council working together and engaging many others across the state in its work of building a local sustainable food economy in North Carolina, ” said Nancy Creamer of the Center for Environmental Farming Systems.

Creamer convened a series of regional meetings that culminated in a statewide Farm-to-Fork Summit in Raleigh in May at which sustainable farmers, chefs, advocates and agricultural officials examined steps needed to establish a viable sustainable food system for North Carolina. High on the list was the creation of a Food Policy Council. Governor Bev Perdue addressed the summit and pledged her support for establishing the food policy council and encouraging a sustainable local food economy for North Carolina.

Special thanks to the bill sponsors, Charlie Albertson in the Senate, and Ray Rapp in the House, the many co-sponsors who signed on to the bill, and legislators who supported it, the Center for Environmental Farming Systems and a coalition of diverse stakeholders who worked for its passage including:  the NC Sustainable Food Systems Coalition (representing many different organizations) , NC Farm Bureau, and the NC Department of Agriculture.

The Center for Environmental Farming Systems has already established an online directory of stakeholders who attended the Summit and are actively involved in promoting a sustainable food system. Click here to access the N.C. Food NET database.

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Entry filed under: Politics/ Policy, Sustainable Farming, Sustainable Food. Tags: , , , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • […] N.C. sustainable food policy council bill approved! – Sustainable Grub […]

    Reply
  • 2. Brian Rosa  |  September 11, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    What can be done to faciltate more food waste( left overs from farmers markets, restaurants, grocery stores….) to be diverted to food recovery programs (Inter Faith Food Shuttle) and composters (McGill, Brooks, Novozymes) ? The NC Food Diversion Task Force is working on encouraging this practice and would like to be of help in any future discussions pertaining to food residuals.
    I look forward to any feedback
    Brian Rosa, Organic Recycling Specialist
    NC DENR, DPPEA

    Reply
  • 3. Don Belk  |  October 10, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Hi, Dee. Love your blog, as always. I’ve heard that appointments have been made to the Sustainable Food Policy Council. Do you know? Can’t find anything online. Thanks! Don Belk

    Reply
    • 4. sustainablegrub  |  October 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm

      Hi, Don. I’ve lost track of this but I’ll check with Nancy Creamer and post something if I find out.
      Best, Dee

      Reply

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