New Hampshire is building a strategic food system plan for the Granite State, and it’s going to be a good one.
Vermont has the Farm to Plate Strategic Plan, which is guiding work around the state. New Hampshire will similarly build a strong network, with goals and action steps.
A great team at the University of New Hampshire is leading the planning process and holding gatherings in each region of the state. Our Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee gathering was August 27 at Colby-Sawyer College. In small groups, we discussed the inspirational changes we’ve seen in food access and farms, the problems that still need to be addressed, and our hopes and plans for the future. I shared a table with dedicated chefs from Colby-Sawyer and Proctor Academy, Pat McGovern of Upper Valley Locavores, a UNH Extension nutritionist who teaches cooking and shopping skills, a Black River Produce sales rep, and the Wellness Director at New London Hospital. What a group!
Each table held a similar cross-sector mix, and the conversations were juicy and invigorating. After all the gatherings are held across the state, the leadership team at UNH will draft a New Hampshire Food Strategy and seek public comments in December. You can learn more and get involved here.
No road trip is complete without closely examining local food resources. I carpooled to Colby-Sawyer with Kristen Coats of UV Healthy Eating Active Living, and we made sure to load up on corn and a giant doughnut at the amazing Spring Ledge farm stand in New London. I highly recommend a visit.– Becka Warren, Valley Food & Farm Manager