Making Food Work with FoodWorks

Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending Speaker Christine Quinn’s release of FoodWorks, the City Council’s plan for a more sustainable New York City food system, at the Food and Finance High School on Manhattan’s West Side. The plan traces the NYC food system from production to post-consumption (i.e. waste) and outlines 59 policy proposals designed to create a “long-term vision for a better food system.

Some of the notable proposals the Speaker discussed at yesterday’s events were: the redevelopment of Hunts Point Terminal Market to meet future demand for produce, meat and fish being moved into the City, as well as the incorporation of a permanent wholesale farmers market; the support and expansion of food processing jobs in NYC; and the development of networks between producers, processors, and retailers in the City in order to increase local sourcing of food items.

One of the initiatives that drew the loudest applause from the crowd was the Speaker’s call to end the controversial practice of requiring food stamp recipients to be fingerprinted in order to receive benefits. According to the report the practiced has deterred over 30,000 eligible individuals from applying for food stamps, at a loss of over $50 million in federal benefits to both these individuals and the NYC economy. She called on the City to end this “criminalizing of hunger.”

The Speaker’s remarks and the full report are available on the FoodWorks Council website.

Image via A Blog Voyage

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