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Agriculture and Food: Keeping It Local

The city actively encourages sustainable food production practices, equitable access to healthy food, and regional efforts to create a strong and resilient food system. This work is carried out through various programs and projects within the city’s departments, coordinated by the city manager’s office and furthered through collaboration with the city’s many partners in Boulder County.

Closely associated with these efforts is our community’s growing interest and demand for locally produced foods, be they grown on the city’s agricultural outskirts, in small-scale gardens dispersed throughout the city or distributed through “Community Supported Agriculture.” The result is the city’s dynamic and thriving natural and local foods economy where restaurants specialize in providing local ingredients, garden-to-table offerings are on the rise and interest grows for a year-round farmers’ market.

Local foods and direct-to-consumer marketing support many of the city’s food and agricultural goals (as identified in the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan). They provide an opportunity for people to ask producers questions about where their food came from and how it was grown. Buying direct from a farmer means they can find out as much information as they wish about how livestock and crops were grown, handled, and harvested. This helps build community and fosters greater confidence and satisfaction than can be gained by relying on the advertising claims of food from far-flung and often anonymous sources. Diversifying our agriculture land uses adds new special places for people to visit and appreciate and make part of their lives. People intuitively know that eating food grown closer to home is often healthier for the land, for the community and for themselves.

The links below provide more information on local food efforts that overlap with city efforts, as well as general resources for those wishing to support and explore local food options in and around Boulder. You will also find on this page news coverage on the launch of a regional website on local foods called The Shed, available at www.theshedbouldercounty.org

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