Local Food Initiative News

LFI banner 2

Vashon Island growers are using the challenges of 2020 to improve the island’s food and farm economy

vashon fm

The creative and efficient ways that farm businesses have responded to the COVID-19 crisis have been inspirational and transformative. The Vashon Island Growers Association (VIGA) has expanded their efforts to support farm businesses online and promote collaboration between farmers and food access organizations. These efforts include effective promotion of Vashon farm stands, expansion of  Vashon Fresh, and supporting the island community through the Food Access Partnership.

Read more about VIGA's creative responses to COVID-19 and how they have supported new partnerships on Vashon Island between growers and food access organizations on DNRP's blog here

To learn more about the Food Access Partnership, visit their website here. To visit a Vashon Island farm stand, click here.

Photo courtesy of VIGA.

read more

Support a farmer's market or local farm store as part of "Keep it local King County" campaign

keep it local

Many businesses around the region have changed operations to keep their employees and customers safe, and are open for business. The “Keep it local King County” campaign seeks to highlight available offerings, and stress the importance of spending dollars locally.

Even with heightened restrictions, there is still plenty to do safely with family in your household or with a friend outdoors, wearing a mask and staying socially distant. Visiting farmers markets and nearby farms are great ways to enjoy the holidays. Check out Local Food Finder to find a farmer's market or local farm store in King County to visit or shop online.

Watch Executive Dow Constantine's visit to the West Seattle Farmers Market here. Please see the press release here for details.

read more

Visit Local Food Finder to keep it local and find farms near you!

Examining the impact of COVID-19 on food security in Washington state: Initial findings available now


The University of Washington and Washington State University, with support from Tacoma Community College, have created the Washington State Food Security Survey to monitor how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted economic security and food access for Washington state residents. A few important initial results are shared below:


  • Food insecurity has spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic, affecting an estimated 30% of households in Washington state.
  • Highest rates were observed among households below the poverty line (58%), with some college education or less (44%), and for persons of color (42%).
  • Households with children were affected. Of the food insecure households, 59% had children.
  • About 40% of all survey participants reported that their diet got worse. There were concerns about rising food costs, access, and transportation.

Read the full results here. Round 2 of this survey is available now to learn more about how Washington residents are handling economic and food disruptions due to the pandemic. You may access the online survey here: https://redcap.link/WAFOOD2

read more

Smart storage: Keep food fresh during the holidays


Did you know that fresh vegetables and fruit are the most wasted food items? Often, this is because we have purchased too much produce or didn’t use it in time. By storing fruits and vegetables for maximum freshness, they will taste better, last longer, you can save money, and make fewer trips to grocery store. 

To help minimize food waste, King County has created this Food Storage Guide available in multiple languages in order to allow consumers to waste less and save more. This guide describes how to store dozens of different kinds of food items, includes helpful facts about food date labels, and provides quick tips for food storage.

To access the Food Storage Guide available in multiple languages, visit King County’s smart storage website.

read more

Attend the Farm-to-Table Trade Meeting: A new feature includes Tasting Boxes that support local producers

Farm to Table Trade Meeting

Seattle Good Business Network is partnering with Sustainable Connections and Business Impact NW to make the annual NW WA Farm-to-Table Trade Meeting an expanded regional event during Food Biz Week from February 22-26, 2021.This virtual event includes a week of educational panels and conversations, facilitated networking activities, and an opportunity to taste the bounty of Puget Sound food producers from the comfort of home. The event will be all virtual, so folks working in the food and farm community are invited to attend from anywhere in the region.

Tasting Boxes will be available for sale starting in January, with samples from food producers all over the region. You can order boxes to enjoy during the week’s festivities and connect with producers virtually to learn more about each one. Purchasing boxes will help support our food producers. Box options will include a mix of fresh foods and pantry items delivered to your door, alcoholic beverages, and a shelf-stable selection available to ship outside of the delivery area.

Learn more about and register for the Farm-to-Table Trade Meeting here.

read more