The local food and farm task force would:
- Identify financial opportunities, technical support and training necessary for local and specialty crop production.
- Identify strategies and funding needs to make fresh and affordable locally grown foods more accessible.
- Identify existing local food infrastructures for processing, storing and distributing food and recommendations for potential expansion.
- Develop strategies for encouragement of farmers’ markets, roadside markets and local grocery stores in unserved and underserved areas.
At the Senate Committee on Agriculture hearing, those testifying in favor of the bill included representatives from the Kansas Department of Agriculture (KDA) and the Kansas Farmers Union. Written testimony in favor of the bill was submitted by representatives of the American Heart Association, KC Healthy Kids, and the Kansas Rural Center. The proponents of the bill stated there was support to continue working toward the overall objective of removing existing obstacles to increase locally grown food in Kansas. There was no neutral or opponent testimony provided at the Senate Committee hearing.
1 in 15 Johnson County residents lives below the poverty line (that’s about 37,000). Hopefully, this task force can help make Kansans healthy and address the growing number of Kansans going hungry.