Homegrown Minneapolis invites public to weigh in Dec. 12
Minneapolis residents interested in healthy, sustainable, locally grown foods have a chance to participate in a Homegrown Minneapolis community meeting Dec. 12. The initiative has completed a number of its first phase recommendations including an Urban Agriculture Policy Plan to ease the way for growing more food in the city; neighborhood networks for seeds, seedlings and classes; making healthy food at farmers markets more available to families with lower incomes; and setting up low-interest loans and technical assistance to start up food-related businesses. Homegrown Minneapolis is a City-community initiative expanding the community’s ability to grow, process, distribute, eat and compost more healthy, sustainable, locally grown foods.
WHAT: Mayor R.T. Rybak and City Council Member Cam Gordon will launch a working celebration including a report on the first two phases of Homegrown Minneapolis, introduction of the new Minneapolis Food Council and a check-in on the priorities community members have around development of a more healthy, sustainable local food system.
WHEN: Monday, Dec. 12
4:45 to 5:15 p.m. Networking, music and food
5:15 to 7:30 p.m. Program
WHERE: University Research and Outreach Center (UROC), 2001 Plymouth Ave. N.
MORE: Find out how City of Minneapolis policies and partnerships are part of dishing up more delicious, nourishing local food at Minneapolis dinner tables for the better health of Minneapolis’ residents, economy and environment. Progress includes:
- Improving access to land for food growing by changing the zoning code and by making 18 City-owned plots available for community gardens.
- Improving access to seeds, tools, education and connections through a “hubs network.”
- Expanding the ability to use Electronic Benefits Transfer (“food stamps”) at farmers markets.
- Creating and supporting mini farmers markets.
- Upgrading City ordinances to reduce barriers and provide greater support for urban agriculture activities.
- Expanding City composting pickup pilots and supplying community gardens with more than 985 cubic yards of free and reduced-rate compost.
- Developing a sustainability measurement and accountability mechanism for local food.
- Supporting youth development and training.
Establishing a Homegrown Business Development Center loan program to provide financing and technical assistance to Minneapolis-based businesses that process and manufacture local food products.
Homegrown Minneapolis staff and the food council will take feedback from the community at the Dec. 12 meeting and by email sent to [email protected]. Staff will be looking for feedback on where Homegrown Minneapolis has made the most progress; what needs the most attention next to further develop Minneapolis’ healthy, sustainable, local food system; and what we have learned about community engagement that will help us continue expanding our community connections and communications in the next phase.
For more information on Homegrown Minneapolis, visit www.minneapolismn.gov/dhfs.
Published Dec 8, 2011