Formation: Mayor Brennan formed Shaping Portland's Food System under the original name, The Mayor's Initiative for a Healthy and Sustainable Food System, in the summer of 2012 in response to a series of discussions with community members and as an outcome of a Community Food Forum hosted by Healthy Portland in April of 2012. Community members present at the forum drafted a purpose and values statement and outlined what they would like to see in a community food council for the City. The current version of that purpose and values statement is included below.
The City of Portland supports a host of initiatives to improve the health and sustainability of the food systems that support our community such as composting programs, community gardens, and the farmers markets. The City also supports increasing access to healthier food at schools, in neighborhoods, and at other community locations. To bolster these initiatives and improve the health and sustainability of the food systems that support our community, the Mayor has established the Mayor's Initiative for a Healthy and Sustainable Food System to:
Provide continued and increased public engagement in food-related policies and initiatives;
Identify and implement positive changes in the community’s food systems and policies;
Prioritize and respond to City and community identified needs for food system change and improvement; and
Increase access to healthier food for residents.
Food and water sustain life. Food is a shared need and an opportunity to bring together everyone in our community. The City of Portland has many roles in how our community maintains health and vitality through food.
The City of Portland is committed to a food system that supports:
Justice and fairness in all aspects of the food system
Equal food access for disadvantaged people
Thriving local economies and jobs
Vibrant gardens and farms
Strong neighborhoods and communities
The City aspires to produce as much of its own food as possible and supports local growers, processors and workers. The City works to ensure everyone has enough healthy food and that the healthy food choice is the easier choice. The City intends to support a food system that creates economic opportunity and inspires greater human possibility.
Shaping Portland's Food System is led by a Steering Committee, while at-large membershipis open to any person, business or organization in Portland who wishes to collaborate toward the above purpose and values.