Local Food Campaign
ACE's Local Foods Campaign
Alaska Center for the Environment is committed to providing more access to locally grown food for Alaskans. Locally grown food is better for our health, our economy, and our environment. To achieve this goal, we are focused on three levels of action detailed below. Read on to find out how you can get involved.Policy - Infrastructure - Gardening
- POLICY - Alaska's decision makers need trusted, knowledgeable Alaskans who know our food system to guide them in creating policy. With our partners - including the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Alaska Farm Bureau, Alaska Root Sellers, and the Alaska Division of Agriculture - we have created the platform for this advisory board, called the Alaska Food Policy Council (AFPC). The Alaska Food Policy Council will be tasked to systematically identify obstacles to building a viable local food system in Alaska, propose solutions, and draft a strategic plan to implement these solutions through policy recommendations. You can read minutes from the first meeting (May 2010) of 80+ AFPC participants from across Alaska here. Also get involved in the conversation by visiting our blog!
- INFRASTRUCTURE - From a ‘bricks and mortar’ perspective, we see the imminent need for an Alaskan processing facility. A processing facility would make it possible to preserve Alaska produce for year-round, in-state consumption. It would increase the availability of Alaska Grown foods in stores for consumers, and increase farmers’ ability to grow, making it possible to preserve more farmland. Additionally, a processing facility could pre-package Alaska Grown foods such as potatoes in such a way that state institutions such as schools could purchase in bulk within their current system for preparing food. A processing facility in Alaska would also help make enforcement of the 7% purchasing law (which requires institutions receiving state money to buy Alaskan agricultural products when they are within 7% of the price range of a comparable product from Outside) viable, because a more uniform product would be available to institutions. Finally, a community kitchen component of such a facility would create a space where small-scale growers, chefs, berry pickers, students etc would have an opportunity to cook, preserve, sell, and learn in a DEC approved facility.
- GARDENING - Finally, our most visible and tangible work takes place in the dirt. Join us in our community garden, for one of our many workshops, or to help us celebrate local food in Alaska!
ACE partnered with Alaska Community Action on Toxics (ACAT), Alaska Women's Environmental Network (AWEN), and UAF Cooperative Extension to create a series of gardening workshops, host an ACE/ACAT “C” Street volunteer-run Community Garden plot, and throw local food themed celebrations over summer 2010. We had a great summer with incredible volunteers, and look forward to next season!
Click here for ACE's Anchorage Local Food Guide.For questions or to volunteer, contact Nick at firstname.lastname@example.org or 274-3662