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!
For this edition, we had the pleasure of sitting down with Jen Colby, who was a volunteer on our Food Policy Task Force (FPTF) for over 10 years and just concluded her term. She also served as co-chair for the group from 2017-2018. She also helped establish the Office of Sustainability at the University of Utah. Jen has worked to address issues ranging from food systems and campus gardens to air quality and climate change– she is truly a persevering agent for change!
is the Food Policy Task Force?
The Food Policy Task Force (FPTF) is a group of individuals from diverse sectors of the local food system. They are constantly on the look-out for how Salt Lake City can catalyze opportunities to create an accessible, sustainable, low carbon, and equitable food system that provides healthy and culturally appropriate food for the community. In particular, the Task Force members advocate for policies and programs that support and protect urban agriculture, increase access to fresh, local produce, eliminate food waste, and drive community and economic activity within the local food system.
Jen has witnessed many positive changes over her decade of service on the Food Policy Task Force and has been a leader in bringing many of them to fruition. We wanted to take this opportunity to hear her reflections on the state of our local food system, and to thank her for all she does to contribute to a more sustainable community!
“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!
Do you know a local farmer or organization that is seeking agricultural land to develop?
As part of Salt Lake County’s vision to create more opportunities for locally produced food, the Open Space and Urban Farming programs are seeking local farmers to manage land at Wheadon Park and Big Cottonwood Regional Park. The three separate sites have a total of 20.3 farmable acres.
The County is soliciting proposals from qualified firms “Proposer / Contractor” to provide management and operation of commercial farming enterprise at Big Cottonwood Regional Park (7 acres) and at two parcels at Wheadon Park (3.4 and 9.9 acres).
Salt Lake City has a unique opportunity to help maintain Salt Lake City’s agricultural heritage. We are currently seeking applications from farmers to grow fruits and vegetables on over 1.5 acres of City owned land adjacent to the Sorenson Unity Center at 1333 South 800 West and south of the Cannon Greens Community Garden.
The goal is to have a farm in operation this growing season.
The farmer selected to grow produce on the land must use sustainable methods, including drip irrigation. Toxic chemicals, chemical pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic fertilizer use are not allowed.
In addition to selling as much produce as possible at local Salt Lake City markets, stores, or restaurants, the farm will also have a farm stand that accepts Food Stamp EBT (electronic benefit transfer). Read more
Saturday, March 7, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Gould Auditorium of the Marriott Library
TEDxManhattan, “Changing the Way We Eat,” is a one-day conference featuring a dynamic and diverse group of speakers addressing issues in the sustainable food and farming movement. Watch the webcast LIVE from the Marriott Library on the University of Utah campus from 9:30 am to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 7. Bring your lunch and enjoy a day of learning about food system innovations and networking with like-minded Utahns!
Are you interested in gardening and farming? Do you want to know where your food comes from? Would you like to start a community garden in your neighborhood? Are you interested in leasing land for small plot farming? Do you care about local food?
You’re invited to attend Salt Lake County’s Urban Farming Open House!
What: Urban Farming Open House
Where: 2001 South State Street, South Building Atrium