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The Importance of Food Policy Councils

Emily Broad Leib, director of the Harvard Food Law and Policy Clinic, recently sat down with Anna Lipin from Lucky Peach to discuss food policy councils.

Excerpt from the interview:

“How does a food-policy council address those issues?

‘A food-policy council is a group of individuals from diverse backgrounds—government officials, parents, doctors, teachers, and nonprofit organizations—coming together to try to figure out how they can make local food laws better for local food systems, health, or environment. There are actually more than two hundred in North America now.

Most of them are formed when people come together and say, Our government isn’t prioritizing this but we have a lot of ideas about what needs to change. If we come together as a coalition to make decisions and set our priorities, then we can have an impact…’

How can someone get involved in this project and make change? 

‘Get involved locally. Find a food-policy council. You don’t have to join or give a lot of time. Just go to some of the events they hold. The mission for a lot of these councils is education; they’re a way to get connected to others who care about these things.

We all forget that we are all citizens. If you really care about these issues, you can speak for what you want in our food system to your own representatives. Write your local, state, or federal representative and say, “I care about this issue. I want to see more sustainable food production. I want less food to be wasted.”’ ”

Read “The Importance of Food Policy Councils” in full.

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