A sustainable food and farming system in New England is key to creating a region that is resilient, just, healthy, economically vibrant, and environmentally sound. New England Food Policy: Building a Sustainable Food System identifies policies that are helping New England grow its capacity to feed itself, policies that are hindering this growth, gaps in the existing policy framework, and opportunities for new policies to strengthen our food system. The report is based on interviews with food and
farming leaders across the region and nearly two years of
research and analysis.
The report focuses on public policy issues in five areas:
For each area, the report examines state and federal policies that could increase the region’s food production and consumption. The final chapter examines regional models for states to work together to achieve shared goals. The purpose of this unique research is to suggest ways that New England states could most effectively cooperate to build a sustainable food system.
The New England states have a deep history of cooperation. This history offers promise for our states to work together on complex food system issues. We hope this report serves as a call to action to help policymakers, food and farming leaders, and citizens in each New England state to identify, support, and implement public policies that can have the most significant impact on strengthening our food system. Opportunities for action and dialogue from the report’s findings will be offered.
The report reflects the collaborative work of three partners: American Farmland Trust (AFT), Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), and Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (NESAWG). AFT works to save the land that sustains us by protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices and keeping farmers on the land. CLF uses law, science, and the market to create solutions that preserve our natural resources, build healthy communities, and sustain a vibrant economy. NESAWG is a 12-state network uniting farm and food system practitioners and allies to build a sustainable, just and economically vibrant region.
We conducted a series of 10 webinars delving into policy issues addressed in our report, bringing in experts in the field to join us. You can watch recordings of all 10 webinars here.