Happy Food Day! New food action plan released

The Regional Food Policy Council just released its three year Action Plan.

Happy Food Day!

Happy Food Day!

The Action Plan is the culmination of a six month process to map out council priorities over the next three years and define the council’s role in achieving broader food system objectives.

The release coincides with Food Day, a national day of awareness of diet and food policy.

Over the next three years, the council will focus its efforts on enhancing the economic viability of local and regional food systems, and promoting equity and access to affordable nutritious food.

The Regional Food Policy Council has been active at PSRC since 2010. You can read about the council’s latest activities in the fourth year progress report, or find out more about food policy at PSRC on our food policy webpage.


Toolbox Brown Bag Series: Addressing Food Policy in Comprehensive Planning

Access to healthy food plays a key role in public health, social equity, and emergency preparedness of communities.

Local jurisdictions around the Puget Sound region can address these community health, equity, and resiliency issues by incorporating food policy in their comprehensive plan policies and regulations.

Local jurisdictions around the Puget Sound region can address these community health, equity, and resiliency issues by incorporating food policy in their comprehensive plan policies and regulations.

Join Regional Food Policy Council staff on June 19th from 12:30-2:00 at PSRC, 1011 Western Ave, 98104 to discuss why food policy is of interest to planners, learn about resources to take action, and hear from staff and experts in communities that have made food policy a part of the plan.


Speakers: Denise Lathrop, AICP, City of Des Moines; Kara Martin, Urban Food Link; Rebeccah Maskin, Puget Sound Regional Council; Janet Shull, AICP, CSBA, LEED Green Associate, City of Federal Way; Liz Underwood-Bultmann, Puget Sound Regional Council

Webinar: Go to www.bluejeans.com. Hit the “Join Meeting” button and enter the Meeting ID 111996182. If your computer has a microphone, you may speak and participate in the webinar through your computer. If you do not have a microphone, you may call in to the meeting at +1 408 740 7256 or +1 888 240 2560, and then entering the Meeting ID: 111996182.

Questions? Contact Sara Maxana at smaxana@psrc.org.
1.5 AICP CM credits pending.

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There’s an app for eating local in Puget Sound

A new Puget Sound Fresh app makes it easy to find out what’s in season at farms and farmers markets when you’re on the go.

fresh-appThe app was developed through a collaboration of Pierce County and Cascade Harvest Coalition, using support from student interns at the University of Washington Tacoma – Institute of Technology.

Using the app, users can find U-pick strawberries, farmers markets, local organic eggs, information on local farms, recipes, harvest festivals, classes, and more.  The new Puget Sound Fresh mobile app compiles resources available through the annual Farm Guide.

Cascade Harvest Coalition’s Puget Sound Fresh program is dedicated to encouraging residents in King, Pierce, Snohomish and Kitsap counties to “eat local” and support local farms and food producers.

Supporting a healthy, sustainable regional food system is a goal of PSRC’s  Regional Food Policy Council, which brings together community, government, business and agricultural interests to develop policy recommendations to strengthen the regional food system.

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Native foods for a truly local diet

American food travels an average of 1,500 to 2,500 miles from farm to table, according to the Worldwatch Institute.

The Muckleshoot Food Sovereignty Project is working to revitalize Northwest Coastal Indian food culture.

The Muckleshoot Food Sovereignty Project is working to revitalize Northwest Coastal Indian food culture.

A local alternative food shed is the naturally occurring food stuffs that make up the traditional diet of the tribal people who inhabit the Puget Sound region.

On January 10, the Regional Food Policy Council heard about some of the key traditional foods of the Muckleshoot tribe, including salmon, shellfish, berries and camas. Harvesting and sharing this food formed a significant part of tribe’s life and culture.

According to Valerie Segrest, tribal member, nutritionist and educator, consuming the native diet also kept tribe members healthy.  Valerie shared her research on the barriers to accessing traditional foods, and the work she is doing growing traditional foods on the campus of the Northwest Indian College – Muckleshoot. The goal of her project, entitled the Muckleshoot Food Sovereignty Project, is to revitalize Northwest Coastal Indian food culture.

More on the project can be viewed here: http://prezi.com/qmntyjd7rp0j/the-muckleshoot-food-sovereignty-project/

Food Day is October 24th — Celebrate with the Regional Food Policy Council!

Food Day is a nationwide celebration of healthy, affordable, and sustainably produced food.

Food Day celebrates fresh, affordable, and sustainable produced food. Eat some!

Food Day celebrates fresh food. Eat some today!

Many local events across the Puget Sound region are taking place to celebrate food and farms, and raise awareness of hunger, agriculture, and health issues.

The Regional Food Policy Council is celebrating Food Day and its third anniversary! You can read about the recent work of the Regional Food Policy Council in its third year progress report.

This year, the Regional Food Policy Council has released a series of Policy Blueprints that provide guidance to local governments in addressing food policy in policy and programs, and begun outreach to elected officials and planners.

For more information on the Regional Food Policy Council, please contact Rebeccah Maskin at 206-464-5833 or rmaskin@psrc.org or Liz Underwood-Bultmann at 206-464-6174 or lunderwood-bultmann@psrc.org.



Conference to Focus on Community Gardening

The annual conference of the American Community Gardening Association is taking place August 8-11 in Seattle, and PSRC staff to the Regional Food Policy Council will be presenting some of the Council’s work at the conference.

photo of p patch in Seattle

P Patch in Seattle’s International District (photo credit Seattle Municipal Archives)

Urban agriculture, including community gardens, backyard gardens, and farms in the city, is a hot topic in not only food policy, but land use planning.

Staff to the Regional Food Policy Council completed a report in April 2013 on different methods planners can use to measure the amount of urban agriculture that occurs in their city.

The conference brings people together from across disciplines to discuss growing, implementing, and strengthening community gardens, a cornerstone of food policy everywhere.


Beacon Food Forest Gaining Momentum

On Friday, June 14, the Regional Food Policy Council will hear an update from Glenn Herlihy on the Beacon Food Forest.

The Beacon Food Forest is a volunteer effort to create an edible forest of fruit and nut trees, along with P-Patch gardens, to create a local source of food for the Beacon Hill neighborhood. (Watch the video below to learn more about this ambitious project.)

Other topics on the Regional Food Policy Council’s agenda include:  an update on the Federal Farm Bill & House Agricultural Committee, a City of Seattle contract on measuring urban agriculture, and Food Policy Blueprints.

The council meets in the PSRC Conference Room from 10 a.m.-12 noon. All are welcome to attend.