The Sonoma County Food System Alliance (SCFSA) is one of the most dynamic collaborations for food system change in California. Since 2009 the group has developed a roadmap for how communities can come together to change the dialogue and the policy choices driving food and farming in our region.
Some of the group’s accomplishments include:
- Creation of a citizen-science based community-food assessment that is a model for how stakeholders and community members can learn about and evaluate their local food system.
- Sponsoring the county’s single largest gathering (more than 250 participants) of food system stakeholders to create a shared vision and agenda for the future.
- Holding multiple community forums to create solutions to problems as diverse and challenging as increasing land availability for farmers to assuring everyone in the county has access to healthy food.
The group’s signature accomplishment is the publication of the Sonoma County Healthy and Sustainable Food Action Plan, or simply the “Food Action Plan.” Released in 2012, the plan is unique as one of the few local food blueprints in the country with buy-in from government, nonprofit organizations, and food and farming interests. By grouping food system opportunities and concerns into four action areas, the plan is a useful tool for any group, in any county or bioregion, wishing to create systemic change in their local food system. The plan has been adopted by the County of Sonoma, most of its cities, and endorsed by hundreds of local leaders. Dozens of projects in the County now implement recommendations in the report.
Ag Innovations founded the SCFSA and has provided ongoing funding, facilitation, and staff support for its success. Working in partnership with local agencies, particularly the County of Sonoma Department of Health Services, our team has enabled the group to do its profound work.
Why is it so great to grow your own food? Hear from Ag Innovations’ President, Joseph McIntyre, and other food system leaders, as they talk about the benefits of growing your own food, supporting local farmers, and of having gardens in schools. This video is part of KRCB’s “Health Connections” series.
We need to grow more food than ever, but how can we do so within the confines of nature?
Join Joseph McIntyre, Ag Innovations’ President, and other local leaders as they talk about what is needed to make a more sustainable food system possible.