“We’re delighted to partner with Urban Food Connections of Utah to give farmers the critical boost they need to invest back in their operations!”
There have been three funding cycles so far (check out round 1,round 2, and round 3 recipients). We’re excited to allocate the latest $15,000 for a running total of $60,000 in microgrant funding to assist local, small-scale farmers who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. The microgrant fund is one of SLCgreen’s Local Food programs helping achieve our goal of increasing overall access to fresh, healthy food for all members of the SLC community.
Congratulations are in order for seven Utah farms!
Who doesn’t love getting food from our local farmers’ markets?
Shopping at local farmers’ markets is important for supporting our community as well as benefiting SLC’s surrounding environment. A few of our other favorite reasons include:
The fruits and vegetables you buy are the freshest and tastiest available. All of the food is grown by the seller within a short radius, picked fresh, and brought to local markets.
The SLC Downtown Farmers’ market only sells products that have been grown or hand raised by local farmers. This makes it easy to ask them what their farming practices are to make sure they align with your values.
The incredible variety of healthy fruits and veggies is inspiring. Need information or recipes for something you have never tried before? Farmers often have recommendations for preparing their products and are more than happy to share their favorites.
We are supporting family farmers! Buying directly from farmers gives them the valuable capital they need to keep operating and providing consumers with an alternative to mass-produced foods.
Buying local supports the economy, keeping more of our dollars invested in the community.
Many of our local farmers are in business because they love it, but it’s a tough, physically-demanding job with tight financial margins.
Salt Lake City understands the value of healthy, local food as well as the benefit that farmers bring to our local community and economy.
That’s why we’re allocating a total of $75,000 in microgrant funding to assist local, small-scale farmers who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. The microgrant fund is one of SLCgreen’s Local Food programs aimed at helping achieve our goal of increasing overall access to fresh, healthy food for all members of the SLC community.
Salt Lake City is proud to unveil a new grant program, offering $85,000 to spur local sustainable farming efforts.
Because just 3 percent of the fruits and 2 percent of the vegetables consumed by residents are grown in Utah, this program aims to support a more resilient local food system.
In partnership with Urban Food Connections of Utah—the non-profit affiliated with the Downtown Alliance– we’ll be granting money to farmers who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. Read more
by SLCgreen Outreach Coordinator Stephan Sveshnikov
There are over three hundred food policy councils in the U.S., representing towns, cities, tribes, counties, and entire states. Salt Lake City’s Food Policy Council (FPC) is one of three in Utah, with another council in Ogden and one at the state level. Food Policy Councils unite community organizations to help guide policy related to our food systems. They inform local government on everything from food access and urban agriculture to food waste and climate concerns.
Salt Lake City’s Food Policy Council (formerly the Food Policy Task Force) was created in 2009. The group identifies policy and program opportunities and makes recommendation for how to create a more equitable, sustainable, and resilient community food system. Their first project was a sustainable code revision, which made it easier to keep chickens, bees, and grow food in Salt Lake. The FPC has supported the Sustainability Department on a variety of other initiatives over the last decade, including the SLC FruitShare program, the curbside composting program, the Square Kitchen Culinary Incubator, the Local Food Microgrant Fund, and much more. Fourteen members representing various sectors of the food system make up the FPC, from small farmers, to anti-hunger organizations, advocates for immigrant and refugee communities, and representatives of the public health sector.
This year, the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future launched an initiative to help food policy councils around the country confront systemic racism and inequities in their local food systems. Fifteen councils from fifteen different states were selected to participate, including the Salt Lake City FPC! The initiative will help Salt Lake City as our FPC takes its next steps to build a more equitable food system.
This week, our program manager Bridget Stuchly was honored at Slow Food Utah’s Feast of the Five Senses with the “Community Leader – Snail Award.” We’re grateful (and not at all surprised) that she received this recognition! (Though she was surprised, because we all kept it a secret!)
The Slow Food Utah Snail Awards were launched in 2012 as a way of recognizing those people who are ardent supporters and believers in the Slow Food mission. That mission is to “inspire individuals and communities to change the world through food that is good, clean and fair for all.”
Carson Chambers of Slow Food Utah and the Downtown Farmers Market presenting the “Community Leader Snail Award” to SLCgreen Program Manager Bridget Stuchly on October 21, 2018.
Welcome to SLCgreen Connections, an occasional series highlighting SLCgreen’s fantastic local partners—the people and organizations with whom we work closely to make Salt Lake City a greener, more vibrant, and sustainable city!
by Ardyn Ford, SLCgreen intern and Sophia Nicholas
Salt Lake’s historic Rio Grande Depot houses the Winter Market, an event that brings the city to life every Saturday from November to April. If you haven’t been yet, make a beeline there this week! The market is open through April 21.
Once there, you’ll find tables lined with colorful, fresh produce filling the large hall, while locals bustle around, creating a vivacious energy that stands out against the backdrop of gray days. Read more
In February, the City announced a microgrant program for local farmers in partnership with Urban Food Connections of Utah (UFCU). The fund will offer the majority of funding to local farmers over a two year period who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. (UFCU will receive a small portion of the funds to administer and help grow the program).
The grants will help farmers access technology, education, tools, and equipment to grow more produce and do so more sustainably.
“We’re delighted to partner with Urban Food Connections of Utah to give farmers the critical boost they need to invest back in their operations,” said Mayor Biskupski.
The first of three grant cycles has just concluded. The program was competitive with 33 applicants requesting a total of $131,668.93 in microgrant funding. So while only a handful of awardees were chosen for this round, we know there is sizable demand for continued microgrant opportunities to support local farmers and the local food market. We hope to continue to work with UFCU to expand the program in the coming years to meet more of that demand.
It’s 2020 already and we can hardly believe it! Salt Lake City finished out 2019 strong alongside 19 communities that opted into the Community Renewable Energy Act’s pathway to achieve net-100% renewable energy.
But that’s not all SLCgreen got up to in 2019. It was a busy year, and as a community, we have taken major strides in accomplishing our goals. See our full 2019 Year in Review here and read below for a few of the major highlights.
Thanks to all our partners in City government, other government agencies, non-profit associations, neighborhood groups, business partners, and community councils, we are continuing to make SLC more sustainable and resilient.
You can take a look at the 2017 and 2018 reports to see what we’ve been working on over the last few years. Before we set our sights on 2020, here are a few highlights from 2019!
Air Quality, Climate Change & Energy
After a three-year collaboration with Park City, Summit County, Rocky Mountain Power, and the state legislature, we successfully saw passage of House Bill 411 the “Community Renewable Energy Act” in the 2019 legislative session. The law establishes a legal pathway for communities with 100% clean energy goals to achieve them in collaboration with Rocky Mountain Power.
Expanded public EV charging infrastructure, increasing the total number of city-owned EV charging ports to 38, plus 16 at the airport.
With Utah Clean Energy, launched “Empower SLC,” a neighborhood energy efficiency program targeting the 84116 and 84104 neighborhoods to improve energy efficiency and conservation measures that reduce pollution and lower utility costs. As of September, over 450 households have been engaged, resulting in an estimated savings of 335,353 kWh per year!
Developed an energy after-school curriculum for youth groups and created a new partnership with YouthCity on programming for the Fall 2019 programs. This resulted in the adoption of “energy” as the central theme of their Science Fair.
Hosted the Elevate Buildings awards luncheon, recognizing first-year reporting commercial buildings with ENERGY STAR scores 75 and above and Mayoral recognition of exceptional performers.
The last few years have been incredible for us here at SLCgreen and this past year was no exception.
We are thrilled to share our progress from 2018 with you. As always, we’d like to give a huge shout out to all of our partners— those in City government, other government agencies, non-profit associations, passionate neighborhood groups, and dedicated community councils with whom we work. Building a more sustainable SLC takes many hands!
Salt Lake City and Urban Food Connections Announce Round Three of Funding for Local Food Microgrant Program
BUG Farms, a recipient of the first funding round from the Local Food Microgrant Program.
Applications are now open for local commercial farmers to seek assistance in expanding their operation and production of more organically-grown fruits and vegetables.
Salt Lake City launched the Local Food Microgrant Program in February 2017 in partnership with Urban Food Connections of Utah, the non-profit organization that runs the Downtown Farmers Market, Rio Grande Winter Market and Tuesday Harvest Market. The Salt Lake City Council, on the recommendation of the Administration and its Sustainability Department, in 2016 set apart $85,000 to initially fund the program.
The program offers funding to local farmers who want to expand their operations with sustainability in mind. The grants help farmers access technology, education, tools and equipment to grow more sustainable produce.
“Our goal is to increase the amount of healthy, locally-grown, organic food available in Salt Lake City,” said Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “By providing small grants to farmers, we are also supporting local, ecologically sustainable agriculture and the City’s economy.”
The third funding round is now open and will award $15,000. The microgrant program has so far generated substantial interest among small-scale commercial farmers. Read more