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National Public Health Week: April 2-8, 2012

April 2, 2012

April 2 marks the beginning of National Public Health Week, organized annually by the American Public Health Association to bring attention to current issues in public health.  The first day’s “tools and tips” from APHA focus on healthy eating and supporting local food efforts.

With alarming trends in overweight and obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related diseases, including among American children, there has growing interest in recent years to explore how our food supply impacts the health of our nation.  NSAC and its members are committed to using federal agriculture and food policy to strengthen public health.

Here are some of examples of our public health work as well as ideas for how can you connect your food system work to public health advocacy:

  • NSAC partners with the National Farm to School Network and Community Food Security Coalition to advocate for Farm to School programs, which have a proven track record of increasing children’s consumption of fresh produce.  In the new Farm Bill we are proposing expanded opportunities for schools to purchase fresh, local produce to serve in school meals.
  • NSAC and the Farmers Market Coalition, an NSAC member group, strongly support leveling the playing field within nutrition assistance programs to provide low-income Americans with access to farmers markets and other direct producer-to-consumer marketing outlets.
  • The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, an NSAC member, convenes Healthy Food Action, an effort to engage health professionals in advocating for healthy food and agriculture policies.  You can sign up to receive action alerts and other pertinent information and can sign your name to the Charter for a Healthy Farm Bill.
  • NSAC member Fair Food Network operates Double Up Food Bucks, a nutrition incentive initiative for participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).  Research shows nutrition incentives not only increase purchases of fresh produce but also yield purchases of a wider variety of nutrient-rich produce.

Categories: Food Safety, Local & Regional Food Systems, Nutrition & Food Access

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