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Franklin County and Columbus Partnering to Create Food Action Plan

Monday, November 24, 2014
Contact: Hanna M. Greer, Franklin County, 614/525-5848
John Ivanic, Columbus City Council, 614/645-6798

The Franklin County Board of Commissioners and the City of Columbus have announced their support for a new partnership with Local Matters, a non-profit transforming the Central Ohio food system through food education, in order to create the Columbus – Franklin County Food Action Plan, a community effort to create a stronger, more sustainable local food system. The Franklin County Board of Commissioners is expected to approve a resolution on Tuesday, November 25 during their weekly General Session meeting (9 am at 373 S. High St., 26th Floor) establishing the partnership and authorizing the County’s participation.

In 2013, the Commissioners adopted Resolution #809-13 solidifying the County’s commitment to a strong and resilient local food system. Tomorrow’s action by the Board furthers those efforts.

The Columbus – Franklin County Food Action Plan will include data collection and the analysis of food supply and demand in Columbus and Franklin County and will be completed by summer 2016. The plan will incorporate the input of local food experts and stakeholder groups to develop recommendations that will make it easier for residents to access nutritious foods and improve linkages between consumers and producers as a long-term, economic development and public health strategy.

“The Columbus – Franklin County Food Action Plan will help Central Ohioans lead healthier lives by improving their access to quality, affordable foods,” said Councilmember Priscilla Tyson, chair of Columbus City Council’s Health and Human Services Committee. “The plan will also help reduce food waste and enhance coordination and communication among existing food resources and agencies in our community.”

“The Franklin County Commissioners have long been committed to supporting local food producers, and encouraging the local food movement,” said Commissioner John O’Grady. “This partnership resolution to create a local food action plan is the logical next step to help find the gaps in our current food infrastructure, and fill them to strengthen the local food economy as well as improve access to healthy food. It’s a really exciting initiative.”

“Local Matters has long been working to transform our community’s food system through public education and increased access to healthy, affordable, and sustainable food,” said Local Matters Executive Director Michelle Moskowitz Brown. “The proposed Food Action Plan represents a great step forward for the local food system in Columbus and Franklin County, and we’re thrilled the city and county have chosen to invest in such a critical initiative.”

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