Why do Food Policy Councils exist?
The aim of most councils is to enhance the local food system to spur local economic development, improve the environment, and advance food security and community health.
Who is involved in Food Policy Councils?
Food policy councils are typically comprised of stakeholders from across the local food system including local farmers, distributors, restaurant owners, hunger relief organizations and consumers – but food policy councils also include professionals from sectors not typically associated with agricultural such as education, health and transportation. Everyone has a role whether as a professional or as a resident and consumer.
What do Food Policy Councils do?
They primarily focus on three areas: (1) First, they act as an educational forum about the local food system; (2) They provide a platform for food system stakeholders to collaborate and coordinate efforts on specific aims ranging from community gardens to local infrastructure such as processing plants or local distribution centers; and (3) They influence and advise on food policy – this can range from animal husbandry rules in municipalities, changes to transportation routes to make healthy food choices more accessible to all community members, or local food procurement legislation to foster stable markets for local farmers.
Who benefits from Food Policy Councils?
- CONSUMERS who may want more choice and information about where and how their food is grown;
- RESIDENTS who may have difficulty accessing full service grocery stores offering quality, fresh product; and
- LOCAL ALABAMA FARMERS who may want to keep their farms in production but need partners to create markets and outlets for local foods.