Food Access

Soil Born Farms is dedicated to changing our Sacramento food system by increasing availability to high quality, locally produced food for all segments of the Sacramento community.

We do this by:
• Growing certified organic vegetables and fruits on two urban farms in Sacramento County.
• Supporting existing and new local farmers.
• Developing and promoting innovative food access programs.
• Educating youth and adults about healthy lifestyle choices.

 

A recent joint report by PolicyLink and The Food Trust, entitled Access to Healthy Foods and Why It Matters: A Review of the Research, underscores healthy food access as the foundation necessary for reaping the positive benefits associated with healthy food.

 

 

What is a Food System?

The food system includes all processes in feeding our population: production, processing, distribution and consumption. This system can refer to any geographic area such as a neighborhood or larger city, county, state, region or country. Although we label some of our work as “local food access projects,” it inherently involves all aspects of our food system. Moreover, Soil Born Farms’ food system work focuses on the Greater Sacramento area, but is similarly impacted by and is a part of the larger food system that expands out to the entire country and beyond. This concept lends itself to the motto: “Think globally, act locally.” The more we understand as individuals and as a community about how our food system works (and doesn’t work), the better our ability to facilitate and create change toward the end goal of a healthy and vibrant community.

 

Goals for our Sacramento food system:

  • Improved health (reduction of chronic/acute diseases)
  • Consumption patterns are increasingly based on the seasonality of Sacramento
  • Food access for all
  • Stable base of local farms and farmers
  • Sustainable relationships between producer and consumer (more direct relationships, shorter travel distances for both, conservation of resources)
  • Food and agriculture-based businesses that support the production and consumption of locally produced products
  • Increased public participation in food and agricultural policies

 

Soil Born Farms defines food access as: Individuals have the resources, financial or other, to supply themselves and their family with the necessary food for a healthy and vibrant lifestyle. Food access can be enhanced by:

  • Awareness and education: Basic nutritional information and understanding of the direct relationship between diet and personal health.
  • Availability of high quality food: Whole or minimally processed, non-sprayed, fruit, vegetables, nuts and grains (preferably locally produced).
  • Affordability: Food prices that allow for purchasing of high quality, nutritious foods within a weekly food budget; alternative purchasing options, such as EBT and WIC.
  • Proximity: Food outlets are located near housing and/or employment; any mode of transportation (car, bike, mass transit, walking) is a viable option to access food.
  • Availability of culturally appropriate food options: Food items which are typically used in traditional day-to-day cooking.
  • Food preparation knowledge and skills: Ability to prepare fresh and nutritious meals within cost and time limitations of an individual’s lifestyle.

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