Food is a necessity for all of us, but not just any food – fresh, affordable, healthy food. Equity in our food system is vital to growing healthy communities. The best way to do this is to develop a vibrant and inclusive local, sustainable food system.
Plant good food thoughts, grow good food choices! Sustainable food systems operate in a cycle of sustainable production and support. Farmers can make their food more sustainable by limiting pesticide use and treating their animals humanely and responsibly. Consumers can cast their votes for these healthier and more sustainable foods when they choose to support these farms. Choosing foods that are produced close to home also reduces the impact of our food system on the environment by reducing the distance food travels from farm to table. – Centers for Disease Control
“These small producers give us the opportunity to voice our preferences for a food system that promotes many participants, lots of diversity, ongoing conversations on issues, vibrant community, and a system that is place-based—it is what the particular location needs it to be.” – Susie Marshall, Grow North Texas
The urban environment has a crucial role to play in providing access to healthy, affordable food in underserved communities. While most people tend to think of community gardens when they think of urban food, there is so much more to the food landscape in our cities. There are rooftop farms, bee keepers, personal chicken coops, vertical gardening, technologies like aquaponics, and so much more that results in a very diverse urban food system. Utilizing these different methods and skill sets of local groups makes the local food system more sustainable and resilient.
Local Foods, Local Places Technical Assistance Grant
The City was recently awarded the EPA Local Foods Local Places (En Español: Alimentos Locales, Sitios Locales) technical assistance grant. We will continue meeting with local food groups, community gardens, bee keepers, and other stakeholders to develop a local food brand for the Dallas area. The City will continue to support our local food system to provide equitable access to fresh, healthy foods in all of our neighborhoods.
Check out our Community Garden Grant
Its purpose is to assist those within the community that are seeking to begin or expand a community garden for the benefit of themselves and others, who donate produce to local food charities. Funds are for gardens using organic growing methods and water conservation measures, such as rain water harvesting and drip irrigation.