In 2015, to assess progress against the 20% local food by 2020 goal, network members documented measurements for each of five network objectives.
Here are just a few of their findings:
- Three northwest Michigan school districts that participated in the “10 Cents A Meal” program have increased spending on local produce by 140 percent per year.
- The percentage of pantries and meal sites purshasing produce from local farmers increased from 17 percent in 2014 to 40 percent in 2015.
- In the past three years, the number of farmers markets throughout northwest Michigan participating in Double Up Food Bucks nearly doubled, from just eight markets in 2012 to 14 in 2015.
You can find more info on the five new fact sheets: Local Food Sales, Farm to Institution, Agri-business Generation, Food Access, and Farmland Resources. Those are available on the FFN website.
The network is moving forward this year. The focus of each objective has become an action area and task force teams are forming to plan new and innovative projects to be completed by the February 2017 Farm Route to Prosperity summit. Some teams may be eligible for mini-grants to enhance work that directly benefits the community served. To join a task force or provide financial support in an action area, contact Carol Danly at [email protected].