Salt Lake City


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Salt Lake Community Food Assessment

Community Food Assessment banner image

To help make relevant and practical decisions about Salt Lake City’s future, Salt Lake City embarked on a project to look at challenges and opportunity for a more sustainable local food system.

Recognizing the need for more information about the current state of it’s own food system, the City initiated a process to identify important information that could shed light on specific influences and impacts within the local food framework. To help understand more about food production within Salt Lake City and its regional food shed, the City has developed this Community Food Assessment.

Community Food Assessment Highlights (PowerPoint Presentation PDF)
Community Food Assessment Snapshot (1-page PDF)
Final Community Food Assessment Report (PDF)

The Community Food Assessment covers issues related to:

» Community & Health

Demographics, population trends, and forecasted changes in our community can influence policy choices that will affect the food system. Understanding where we stand today as far as how our food is influencing our health and nutrition will play a role in determining “where we go from here.”

» Production

Understanding where the food we eat is produced is an important part of developing a more sustainable food system. Many prime farmland areas can be found within 250 miles of the city, and understanding what is (and isn’t) produced within the city limits can tell us a lot about community priorities and local markets.

» Processing & Distribution

Once food has been produced, it needs to get to market. To some extent, all food needs to be “processed” before it reaches our table. Processing can be as simple as rinsing a head of lettuce picked from your own garden, to as complex as large-scale industrialized processing for longer term storage or shipping. Looking at the distribution system that brings us our food can inform our decisions in the future about energy inputs and land use policy.

» Consumption

How and what we consume tells us a lot about the food system. On a daily basis, we make choices about where and what we eat, and markets often reflect broader trends in community interest. Recent data indicate growing demand for local food production, and a closer connection with those that grow and process our food.

» Food Assistance

Local community nutrition is significantly impacted by food resources for sub-populations in the community. Several “at-risk” populations rely on the broader community for providing food at some point in their lives. Many community organizations exist with the primary purpose of providing food to various populations in Salt Lake City. How we support these organizations can influence the availability of food for large segments of the population.

» Food Waste

At the “end” of the food system is found how much food we discard. We can classify our food waste into “consumable” and “non-consumable” waste. Consumable food is often donated by grocers or individuals to community food support organizations. Non-consumable waste often ends up in the landfill, but could be an un-tapped resource for production of compost for use by local producers.

The Community Food Assessment is a “snapshot in time” of Salt Lake City’s food system. It provides analysis of data and current policy, and supplies the Food Policy Task Force, the City, and the public with basic information about our food system, in order to make informed decisions about how we can work together to develop a more local, affordable, and sustainable food system.

Project Links

Project Links

Progress Report (PDF)
Community Food Assessment Preliminary Data & Demographics (PowerPoint PDF)
Community Food Assessment Survey Press Release (Febuary 14, 2012 PDF)
Map of Regional Crop Production (PDF Map)
What is with in 250 miles of SLC via Street Networks? (PDF Map)
Community Food Assessment Highlights (PowerPoint Presentation PDF)
Community Food Assessment Snapshot (1-page PDF)
Community Food Mapping Project