Boulder, Colorado is leading the way when it comes to being a champion for local food.
The city is rolling out a huge initiative to get residents to spend more of their food dollars locally. We’re used to seeing farmers or advocacy groups push for consumers to buy local, but this initiative called, Making Local Food Work, is the result of almost two years of discussions organized by City Hall. The City put together several roundtables with educators, nonprofits, farmers, and other local food advocates to work on this program which could be up and running as early as next spring. And their goal? Simple, create a food network in the community to make eating locally convenient and affordable.
According to a recent article in TakePart.com, Boulder city council member, Tim Plass, made local food a platform during his election in 2011 and, along with Council Member Suzanne Jones, helped initiate the project. Apparently the response from the community was enthusiastic with local advertising agencies donating as much as $50,000 in marketing assistance to help with a consumer education campaign.Plass told TakePart.com; “Making sure that our citizens are healthy is a building block of a successful city. We do that in a lot of ways, whether it’s park design or equipping our first responders. Local food is a natural extension of that.”
A city driven campaign to push local food sends a great message to communities. By supporting the cities local producers, re-enforcing connections within the community and encouraging shoppers to make healthy food choices, Boulder is a great example to others of how a city can support its neighborhoods and build a strong community.