January 30, 2016
(Iowa City, IA) Representatives from Field to Family, a local organization committed to fostering a more local, more healthy and more sustainable food system, released the organization’s annual report at the Field to Family Advisory Board Meeting on Saturday, January 30 from 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM at the Iowa City Public Library, Room A. Highlights of the report include:
- A HUGE increase in local food purchases by Iowa City Community School District for school lunch menus- over 132% from last year, 34% increase from previous highest level- this is despite watermelon and cantaloupe having an early season and not being available for school year, unlike previous years; Field to Family continues to coordinate ICCSD’s Farm to School Chapter and facilitate purchasing of locally grown foods;
- Plans for a new regional Grown Here/ Made Here label got a MAJOR boost, with a new partnership from the University of Iowa Marketing Institute;
- Local Food Finder’s Local Farms listing had more hits than our homepage- an average of 50 hits a day in the last six months of 2015;
- New Pioneer Food Co-op,a founding member of Field to Family, continues to support our mission for a more local, more healthy, more sustainable food system;
- First -ever Local Food Fair, a gathering of businesses and groups working on local food related initiatives, defied expectations with turn-out in the thousands;
- Broke records and sold more tickets than ever before for our annual Culinary Walk;
- Started a new partnership with the Iowa City Co-Lab providing work space for Field to Family;
- Hy-Vee, John’s Grocery, Hills Bank, Edible Iowa River Valley Magazine, Share, Little Village, UICCU, Practical Farmers of Iowa, Four Square Meals, Johnson County Public Health, Local Foods Connection, Blue Zones Iowa City, Pavelka’s Point Meats, MidWestOne, Kalona Supernatural, Organic Greens, LLC., Lucky’s Market, and Culinary Ride also supported Field to Family in 2015.
Field to Family representatives also revealed a new logo for 2016, plans for more Farmer Fairs at two Iowa City schools, a school garden workshop for April 2, next steps for creating a regional blueprint for a Healthy Community Food System and plans for our 15th annual Local Foods Festival in September.
“The food we decide to eat shapes the way we grow, process, transport and use food,” said Board President David Burt, “By supporting local farmers we can revamp our food system to benefit our economy, our health and our environment. Field to Family works to foster this change.”
“The interest in local foods is fueling Field to Family’s efforts to foster a more local, more healthy and more sustainable food system but we have plenty more to do to achieve our goals,” Michelle Kenyon, Field to Family Program Director. “We are reaching out to new partner organizations, new community leaders and new funding sources to ensure our plans for 2016 and beyond will be realized.”
Michelle Kenyon, Program Director for Field to Family, Coordinator of Iowa City Community School District’s Farm to School Chapter
David Burt, Board President of Field to Family
Jenni Mettenmeyer, Farm to School, School Garden Coordinator