FPC 2022 Annual Report
2022 By the Numbers
- 22 guests attended FPC meetings
- 57 working group meetings
- 60+ people attended FPC events
- 7 tabling sessions at community events and markets
- 1 tour and meeting at the Historic Poor Farm
- 2 focus groups for a 10-year Iowa Food System Plan
Community Food and Farm Grant
The FPC helped Local Foods Staff create the framework, develop an outreach plan, and review applications for the Community Food and Farm Grant, funded by the American Rescue Plan Act. The FPC and staff, with approval from the Board of Supervisors, selected 9 farmers, food business owners, and nonprofits to receive funding this first cycle.
- Farm and food businesses grow, process, preserve, or cook more food in the Johnson County foodshed.
- Farm and food businesses expand sales, markets, and/or jobs through education, professional, or peer support services, and/or worker benefits.
- Low-income communities have more opportunities to access community-based food through free food distribution sites, deliveries, community gardens, and/or income-based payment options.
- 126 applications submitted
- 74 applications eligible and reviewed by staff
- 31 applications advanced to FPC review
- 9 applications selected for funding
- 75+ hours dedicated by the FPC to the grant review process alone
Working Groups 2022
Members met monthly with University of Iowa stakeholders and Field to Family to research and explore policies and strategies to increase local food procurement at the University. Members also planned the annual forum focused on farm to institution sales.
Members organized a focus group to inform the Iowa Food System Coalition's 10-Year Iowa Food System Plan. Members used feedback from this event and other input gathered in 2021 to update the strategic plan and advise on Community Food and Farm Grant development. This group also connected with the Director of Rural Development from Iowa City Area Development to share about local food infrastructure needs and challenges. Members also helped plan the forum which included infrastructure-related conversations.
Members planned the Local Foods Roundtable. This group also developed the outreach plan for the grant, considering details such as how to spread the word, how to offer materials in multiple languages, and how to support folks who needed assistance with the application.
ARPA Local Food Initiatives
Members of this working group used research and their food system knowledge to advise on the design of the Community Food and Farm Grant. They also assisted with the development of the application and review processes. This committee's work contributed to the successful administration of this first grant cycle and increased community knowledge of the FPC.
Farm to Institution Purchasing: How Do We Increase Sales?
The 8th annual forum increased awareness of the benefits of local food procurement and barriers and solutions to increasing sales. Panelists discussed the role of food hubs and policies and how to build relationships between producers and purchasers. Panelists included: James Nisly, Producer and Food Hub Manager; Marlie Wilson, Chicago Food Policy Action Council; Michael Graham, UIowa Dining; Teresa Wiemerslage, ISU Extension & Outreach.
Local Foods Roundtable
At the 2022 Local Foods Roundtable, "Transforming the Food System Through Storytelling," attendees identified and reflected on common food system narratives and how they influence actions, behaviors, and policies. Then, attendees identified food system stories that could be shared out to transform understanding.
Previous FPC Annual Reports