Letter: Time to ramp up progress on equitable food system

Graphic by Lori Deaton

The time has come for Asheville to ramp up food production on city land, support regional farmers in meaningful ways and empower residents to grow more food in neighborhoods throughout the city.

In 2013, City Council passed a Food Policy Action Plan. While some notable progress has been made due to the work of the city’s Office of Sustainability and its commitment to partnerships, overall, the accomplishments have been few and the ambition limited.

On Nov. 28, City Council voted to adopt a revised Food Policy Action Plan, one that digs deeper and sets the stage for creative dialogue and innovative policy development to support a more robust food system in our region. The revised plan includes action items to ramp up food production and strengthen relationships with partners by drawing on and elevating community expertise and passion.

Prioritized inventory and assessment work will collect and analyze the myriad of resources already at play in this complex field in order to better understand existing efforts in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. With this deeper understanding, we can build a foundation for ambitious, metrics-based, collaborative initiative development in coming years.

As a progressive city with a “food destination” reputation, it is our responsibility to make an equitable food system a goal and to make food policy and programs a high priority across city departments. We do not expect the Food Policy Action Plan to be the solution; rather, the Food Policy Action Plan is a call to action for city government, an example for the county and an important commitment by the city of Asheville to take these issues on head-first in authentic partnership with the community. Time to dig in!


— Kiera Bulan
Asheville Buncombe Food Policy Council Coordinator
Black Mountain


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Letters
We want to hear from you! Send your letters and commentary to letters@mountainx.com

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

3 thoughts on “Letter: Time to ramp up progress on equitable food system

  1. Deplorable Infidel

    ‘Action plan’ sounds great , but we already have way more ‘food giveaway solutions’ in WNC than probably anywhere on the planet, so there’s that…then we citizens realize that ‘food policy’ is just NOT a function of our government at all, so why do we need to burden government with this ? we don’t.

    • Alan Ditmore

      Shelter is a far bigger problem in Asheville than food, nobody is starving to death in Asheville, but they freeze to death every year. Also voting rights depend on housing, especially for Mayor of Biltmore Forest!

  2. Alan Ditmore

    People do go hungry in Chicago because they can’t afford to rent in Asheville where they can walk to free food! They freeze there too, and in Minneapolis! I would say Detroit but Detroit has housing to spare since it is shrinking.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.