Food policy council works to collaborate, make change

Matt Rose/Carolina Public Press

ASHEVILLE—The first general council session of the Asheville-Buncombe Food Policy Council met Monday, but ideas for how this group should tackle food insecurity have germinated for nearly a year.

And, now, its work takes on increased significance, as research released this week showed that more people in the Asheville area are struggling to get enough nutritious, affordable food.

The 18 representatives from the Food Policy Council’s nine working groups discussed a range of proposals, including a measure supporting the statewide 10% Campaign at Tuesday’s Asheville City Council meeting. The campaign, an initiative of the Center for Environmental Farming Systems, advocates that governments spend 10 percent of food budget dollars locally. Council unanimously approved the effort on Tuesday.

It’s just the latest activity for the all-volunteer Food Policy Council, which started forming last year after the Washington, D.C.-based Food Research and Action Center released a national study then ranking the Asheville area the seventh-worst metropolitan statistical area in the nation for food insecurity….

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City Council signs off on more fresh food markets, affordable housing loans

Peppers

In a shorter-than-usual Asheville City Council meeting, fresh food markets in residential neighborhoods got the go-ahead, as did over $400,000 in affordable housing trust fund loans to two projects.

Council agreed on a series of development ordinance changes, the most talked-about being allowances for fresh food markets in residential neighborhoods. The rule allows such markets on institutional properties such as churches, schools or community centers. The changes passed unanimously, and proponents stated that they would open up the opportunity for healthier food to new areas…

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Katie Souris on Food Policy Council’s progress

broccoli

An account of the Food Policy Council’s workings, from Katie Souris:

Asheville’s new Food Policy Council is leaving the mall with a brand new pair of pants, and it will be wearing them around town for a few months (come on, we’ve all been guilty of it) to see how they fit.

The fledgling FPC has been a legitimate mall of sorts up until now; interested parties from all backgrounds and missions convening in UNCA’s Sherrill Center to discuss, hash out, deliberate, and ultimately dynamically agree what this web should support. Through a trial run of Dynamic Governance in action we decided that this mode of decision making would govern the 7 clusters that are taking shape out of the large group.

The third and final FPC meeting was geared to establish how many representatives each cluster would send to a central circle and how many and what those clusters would be. This was no easy task since as I mentioned we were also charged to decide on a way to decide. That success is arguably the most important thing to come from our meeting, as Dynamic Governance (a new concept to many of us more familiar with Consensus or shouting modes of decision making), could enable our Council to make….progress, consistently, and to work together, listening to all voices at the table. Accomplishing what has been repeated as the goal of inclusivity and representation of the under-represented….

Read More from the Mountain Xpress.

 

Asheville-Buncombe Food Policy Council Master Food Plan

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ABFPC Calendar of Events

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This Earth Day, stop by a unique pop-up festival hosted by House of Balance, in the outdoor space of New Mountain venue. Who is House of Balance? We are a new, independent nonprofit cultivating community through arts and agriculture. (houseofbalance.weebly.com) We invite you to Earth Day Fest! Adorned with bamboo and color, visit our Creation Station: paint a bird house for the installation piece: "Feather Hostel", plant native seeds and take them home for your garden, make a necklace, or add your voice to the community canvas mural! Fun for all ages. Enjoy live music, local food trucks and dancing. Explore over 25 local vendors, including jewelry, metal-smith art, plant starts, handmade clothing, ceramics, tinctures, oils and more! Experience henna, tea pours, chair massage, dry stone wall demonstration and even sign up for Bollywood-Latin fusion dance workshops! Proceeds contribute to the fundraising goals of @[814301645249632:274:House of Balance]! We thank you for your support! Silent Auction Items: Re-Purposed Tshirt by Rhetorical Factory, gift card to WHIST greetings, Wolfsong Ceramics, glass works by Jason Probstein and more! Live Music donated by: 1-2pm Vuelo (Flamenco Avante-garde) 2-3pm @[163009177084869:274:DJ Malinalli] (World Beats) 3-4pm Bollywood-Latin Dance Workshop- Adena Schwartz 4-5pm @[147556886570:274:Nex Millen] (hip-hop, funk, soul) 5-6pm @[536821962996748:274:The Gypsyswingers] (Swing-Blues. Swing dance hour with Keith J. Smith and Sparrow Pants!!) 6pm Appalachian prayer songs with Brandon Quinn 6:15-7pm @[1002633556418592:274:Station Underground] (reggae/progressive dub) 7-8pm @[303272750446:274:Third Nature] (Experimental Life Electronica) Thank you so much for sharing music with us! Educators: Living Stone Masons, The Asheville Alternatives to Pesticides Coalition, March Against Monsanto, Dancing Tree Permaculture, Adena Dance Vendors: Bountiful Cities, Whispersholler Farms, Raven & Crone, Hit'n'Run Henna, Synchronicity Farms, Pantermoon Tea, Roots and Fruits Market, @[188234018035284:274:Patchwork Urban Farms], Mandala Naturals, Quill & Anvil Designs, Flora, @[408824209286931:274:Ebb & Flow Massage Therapy Center], Mystic Crows Elixers and more! @[526599274150672:274:Twisted Roots Food Truck] will be serving some yummies!

Earth Day Fest - House of Balance

April 22, 2015, 1:00pm - April 22, 2015, 7:00pm

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This is the 2nd session of the FREE 4 part workshop series on Use, Misuse, and Alternatives to Pesticides. Our March session brought incredible insight from members of Toxic Free NC out of Raleigh, as well as Brett Laverty from NCDENR, & where we discussed the history of pesticides and their effects on waterways and the honeybee. Come join us for our April workshop as we take a A look at the effects of pesticides on our wildlife and what that means for human beings, as well as a showing of Marla Spivak’s Ted Talk: “What's Killing The Bees?” Keynote Speakers Dr. Dee Eggers, Associate Professor of Environmental Studies, UNC Asheville Carl Chesick, Director, Center for Honeybee Research Phyllis Stiles, Founder, Bee City USA & Bee Campus USA Location: 36 Montford Ave Asheville, Lenoir Rhyne Center for Graduate Studies, 2nd floor boardroom. Time: Meet and greet with local vendors and light refreshments at 6pm. Workshop will begin at 6:30. Sponsored by & Special Thanks to: The Lenoir Rhyne Center for Graduate Studies, Sunny Point Cafe, Loretta's Cafe, HomeGrown, West Village Market, Green Sage Cafe, Roots Hummus, Chef Gene Ettison, West End Bakery, French Broad Food Co-Op, Highland Brewing Co., & Catawba Brewing Co.

Asheville Alternatives to Pesticides Presents: Pesticides Kill More Than Pests: Keeping Bees and Other Wildlife Safe

April 24, 2015, 6:00pm - April 24, 2015, 8:30pm

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