100 people each growing one cabbage in their backyard, or one farmer growing 100 cabbages, or one person making those cabbages into saurkraut, food security in Alaska increases. Barley farmers in the Delta are creating niche markets for their crop and local brewers and fishermen are growing their businesses for their children -- all of these efforts add to the movement. It is quite possible to grow almost all that we need right here in Alaska, once the will is there to do it. Let's grow the 2% of our food sourced locally to 3% and eventually all the way to 100%, one meal at a time! Alaska currently imports 98% of our food. This means we could run dangerously low on food in an emergency, and it's not good for our health or economy. However, the local food movement is alive and well, right here on the Kenai Peninsula!
The Kenai Local Food Connection is an informal group of local food advocates, growers, parents, cooks and friends. Some of us also work in positions dedicated to food and health. It's a grassroots effort to forge connections within our community to increase access to local foods and knowledge about healthy eating. We are aligned with and sometimes collaborate with the Alaska Food Policy Council, Kenai Soil and Water Conservation District, Ionia, Kenai Peninsula Food Bank, Dena'ina Wellness Center, Kenai Change, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, Change4theKenai (the Prevention Coalition), UAF Cooperative Extension, Sustainable Homer, Sitka Local Food Network and other groups around Alaska. Our efforts grow each year. In 2014, for example, we held the second annual Harvest Moon Film Festival and Local Food Week, offered food-related workshops at a local library throughout the summer, and organized the Chef at the Market booth at the Farmers Fresh Market at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank. Our activities, focused on growing, harvesting, and cooking local foods, support food security and health in the communities of Kenai, Soldotna, Kasilof, Sterling and Nikiski.
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