First ever 10-Year Food Policy Plan for New York released
In the last week of March, the Urban Food Policy Institute at City University of New York (CUNY) hosted the Urban Food Policy Forum Food Forward NYC: Food Policy in New York City for the Next Decade and Steps toward Implementation. You may remember that, a few months ago, we reported on the Institute’s public survey about policy recommendations which fed into this newly realeased policy plan.
The goal of the Institute’s forum was ‘to identify meaningful strategies that can deepen and strengthen food governance throughout the plan implementation and help the city make progress in advancing the plan’s vision for a more racially and economically equitable, sustainable, and healthy food system for all New Yorkers‘.
This is the executive summary of the City’s new groundbreaking policy plan:
Food Forward NYC is the City’s first ever 10-year food policy plan, laying out an ambitious inter-agency policy framework to reach a more equitable, sustainable, and healthy food system by 2031.
Food matters. Access to affordable, high-quality food is a fundamental human right and New York City’s food system is foundational to its economy. While the City’s food system delivers a vast array of foods that cater to every possible culture, dietary need and preference, it also faces many challenges. The fragmented nature of the food system means that too many people lack access to affordable, healthy foods; food businesses and other organizations struggle to operate profitably; food workers face challenging labor conditions; and the supply chains that feed New Yorkers are opaque and inefficient.
In Food Forward NYC, the Mayor’s Office of Food Policy (MOFP) is putting forth an ambitious yet achievable plan to address these challenges. Just about every strategy in the plan will require creative collaboration between multiple stakeholders to bring forth real change. Some of these collaborations – such as the implementation of Good Food Purchasing – are already underway. Others will take additional work to launch.
Racial equity is central to this plan, deeply influenced by the work of the Racial Inclusion and Equity Task Force convened as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The implementation of the Good Food Purchasing Program – a national initiative that brings transparency and equity to institutional food purchasing – is also an impetus behind many strategies in the plan.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, MOFP heard repeatedly from stakeholders about how much they valued more transparency and participation in government decision making. Hence, setting new governance mechanisms and enhancing democracy is a critical pillar of the plan.’
New York’s food policy plan Food Forward NYC is here.
For information on the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute see here.
Image: Cover page of New York’s newly released food policy plan (source: Mayoral Office of Food Policy New York City 2021)