One way to continue the dialogue around what a stronger food system could accomplish is through community initiatives like Vision 2020 (empowering our county to become that healthiest in the nation by 2020).
Imagine if we invested more resources into our local food and farm economy.
What could a stronger local food system accomplish?
We Could Live Healthier Lives
People who eat more local food tend to eat more fruits and vegetables – one indicator of healthy eating that Vision 2020 tracks.
Perhaps you’ve joined a Community Supported Farm and experienced the weekly influx of fruits and vegetables to your kitchen. Maybe your child’s school is growing local food and inspiring you to prepare healthier meals at home. Has choosing more local food changed the way you eat?
How We Live Now: The True Cost of Cheap Food
In the United State, 6 out of the 10 leading causes of death are attributed to poor diet and low physical exercise. By 2018 40-45% of all school age children will be insulin dependent, becoming the first generation in our country’s history to die at a younger age than their parents. The percentage of young people who are obese has more than tripled since 1980.
In Keene, 60% of residents are overweight (36%) or obese (24%) and the Great Falls Region spends $58 million each year treating conditions caused by being overweight and $379 million to treat the conditions caused by obesity.
How We Can Live: Vision 2020
How can Vision 2020 and our work to strengthen the local food system blend into one initiative? Can money spent on treating disease be shifted to increasing access to healthy, local food for all? Recently, a work group of community members formed to create an action plan to increase healthy eating. Local food system work needs to be at the table. For more information about the Healthy Eating Work Group contact Linda Rubin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 354-5400 ext 3930.