On May 21, 2013 the Food Policy Council of Buffalo and Erie County was created by the Erie County Board of Health. The Board voted unanimously to create the Food Policy Council (“FPC”), the first of its kind in New York State, as a sub-commission of the Board. Local food systems partners championed the need for a Food Policy Council for a number of years. The inaugural Buffalo Food Policy Summit, held in September 2011, brought the issue to the forefront for local policymakers and other stakeholders, laying the groundwork for action.
The Food Policy Council will be an advisory body that serves as a resource to local governments on all issues concerning food. This will allow Erie County Government and any municipality to draw on the expertise of the FPC to advise decision makers on issues ranging from obesity and limited food access to economic development options including local food procurement requirements and increasing opportunities to purchase food grown right here in Erie County. The FPC provides support and acts as a resource on food systems and its impact on the health of a community. Members of the FPC are expected to be named later this summer.
The FPC was the result of the support and collaboration of many contributors, including the Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo; W.D. Henry & Sons Farm; University of Buffalo’s School of Architecture and Planning; Good Earth, Inc; Healthy Kids- Healthy Communities Partnership, a program of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; Oles Family Farm; Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc.; Cornell Cooperative Extension of Erie County; Buffalo City Councilmembers Michael LoCurto and David Rivera; Be Healthy Institute; Dash’s Market; Erie County Department of Environment and Planning & Department of Health; and the Massachusetts Avenue Project.