New York City’s large and diverse urban agriculture system is considered one of the most innovative and vibrant in the world. The system emerged without a comprehensive strategy, yet critical issues like land tenure, infrastructure, financial and technical resources, and the role of new growing technologies, suggest that an urban agriculture plan may be needed to support and grow this vital urban infrastructure. As the City Council considers requiring a comprehensive urban agriculture plan, this forum will explore what such a plan should include and how the city should go about crafting it. On Thursday June 27, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute and invited experts to explore these and other timely questions.
Participants will learn how to access and manipulate publicly available data relevant to community food work, such as community level datasets detailing healthy and unhealthy food consumption, food retail locations, school lunch participation, community gardens locations, academic outcomes, rates of chronic health conditions, demographics of specific neighborhoods, and others. If there is a particular topic of interest you'd like to add to this list, please reach out and we will look into what might be available! Participants will also learn how to migrate compatible datasets into Google Maps to support environment focused evaluations.
Cities across the United States and abroad are in agreement: current food systems are not serving the public interest. Public food procurement – or the share of a city’s food supply funded by government and government-sponsored institutions – is, arguably, one of the most effective tools that municipalities have to instigate a radical transformation of the current urban food system. One approach being used by cities is the Good Food Purchasing Program (GFPP), a metric based, flexible framework that encourages large institutions to direct their buying power toward five core values: local economies, environmental sustainability, valued workforce, animal welfare, and nutrition. As adoption of good food purchasing policies expands across the East Coast and the US as a whole, and a campaign to bring the GFPP to New York City gains traction, what can New York learn from the experiences of other cities? What sorts of obstacles should municipalities expect when embarking on more ambitious food procurement goals, such as those recently announced in the OneNYC 2050 plan? And, what strategies could city leaders employ to effectively surmount these obstacles? On May 30, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute and invited experts to explore these and other key questions.
Participants will learn how to use focus groups, observations, and other qualitative methods in assessing the impact of their community food work. We will provide an overview of qualitative methods, as well as relevant community food work examples of tools that organizations may choose to use. We will also practice developing and implementing qualitative approaches.
For decades, young people have been at the forefront of highlighting injustices and advocating for more equitable and democratic approaches to solving our nation’s and world’s most serious problems. They are a motor force for social improvement, and their passion, commitment and energy have been the fuel for many social movements including those that seek food justice. Food justice describes the goal of creating equitable food systems that promote human and planetary well-being for all, regardless of race, income, gender, profession, or residence. On April 25th, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute, invited youth food justice leaders, and youth food justice program coordinators to discuss youth leadership in the food justice movement and to analyze critically how young people can realize opportunities and overcome obstacles to shaping local, national and global food environments and food systems.
Please join us for the third session of our Community Food Evaluation Workshop: Using Surveys to Evaluate Community Food Work.
Participants will learn about how to maximize the use of surveys for assessing their community food work. We will provide an overview of survey validation methods as well as examples of validated survey tools that organizations may choose to use. We will also practice developing and implementing bespoke survey tools that organization's can use to measure their impact.
New York City has long been a national leader in defining municipal role for ensuring access to safe and healthy food. But why does food safety matter? How has the level of food safety in New York City changed in the last decade? What are the emerging threats to food safety in New York City and the nation? What else could New York City do to better prevent food-borne illnesses? On Tuesday March 26, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute and invited experts to explore these and other key questions.
Food democracy is central to the advancement of equitable, healthy, and sustainable urban food systems. In a Food Democracy all members of the agro-food system have equal and effective opportunities to design, operate, and participate in its stewardship. But what does it mean to practice food democracy? And how can food policy advocates connect to democracy activism in other sectors? How can we strengthen and expand opportunities for practicing food democracy in NYC and elsewhere? What tools, processes, competencies, and alliances do we need to increase citizen involvement in policymaking processes? How can communities typically absent from the table gain a voice and a seat that will make food policy decisions fairer? On February 28, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute and invited experts to explore these and other key questions.
The CUNY Food Collaboratory brings together faculty and students from around the CUNY university system who are engaged in policy-relevant food research across disciplines. On January 29, five Collaboratory faculty members will share their recent work on food sovereignty; food and nutrition in immigrant communities; school gardens; youth obesity; and the role community college education plays in promoting food security and healthy eating. Researchers will present their findings and take audience questions as part of an in depth exploration into food-related scholarship at CUNY. This will be followed by an opportunity to meet informally and discuss their work in more detail.
What opportunities are there for expanding good food jobs – or food sector jobs that pay a decent wage; offer benefits, safe working conditions and pathways for career advancement; and make healthy affordable food more available in low-income communities – in New York City? What is currently missing to scale up existing innovations? Which policies, initiatives, and investments will best address current entrepreneurs and provide the conditions for good food jobs to flourish? On December 18th, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute and a group of guest speakers to explore these and other key questions in this Urban Food Policy Forum.
How can food be a tool to engage communities? What might be some common goals, messages, and strategies for food, democracy, climate change and civil rights groups leading into the 2020 election? Could a New York City and State Food Policy Agenda for 2020 unify different constituencies? On November 29, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute to explore these and other key questions in this post-election Urban Food Policy Forum!
On September 22, 2018 the Trump Administration proposed changes in the "public charge" rules that would expand the discretion of the Office of Homeland Security to deny applications for green cards or certain types of visas based on an immigrant’s age, family size, income, and assets, as well as based on whether they have utilized certain cash or non-cash public benefits or programs they are legally entitled to use. Such a change could make life more difficult for New Yorkers who depend on and are eligible for many of our nation's public benefit programs.
Are you or someone you know concerned about the impact of this rule change? If so, then join us on November 9th at 6 pm for a community information session to learn the facts about the proposed changes to “public charge” from representatives of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs.
URBAN FOOD POLICY FORUM | Strategies for Confronting Epidemics of Fear and Hunger: The Future of Food Security in New York City
We are now in the public comment period for the Trump Administration proposal to revise the nation’s public charge rule. On December 10, 2018, this period will end. What is “public charge”? What is its current and potential impact for the well-being and food insecurity of immigrant communities in New York City and the US? More broadly, what are other threats to the future of food security in New York City? How can New York best protect the advances in reducing food insecurity of the last two decades? On October 30, join the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute to discuss the public charge rule proposal as well as other threats to food security. The Forum will also provide updates from a new working group focused on immigrant access to food benefits and the latest information on the Nutrition Title of the (now expired) Farm Bill, specifically SNAP and TEFAP components.
Urban Food Policy Forum: Reducing Harmful Corporate Influences on Diet-related Non-Communicable Diseases: Lessons from the United Nations/WHO Global Initiatives
The Third United Nations High Level Meeting on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) will take place in New York City at the end of September. Its goal is to review progress made since the first meeting in 2011 and to consider goals for the coming years. To mark this event and to consider its implications for food policy in New York and elsewhere, the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute invites you to its September Urban Food Policy Forum.
In this session, we will explore how two middle income countries, South Africa and Mexico, have responded to the changing global food system. Speakers will describe the role of global and national food industries in changing the diet and health of people in these countries, with a particular focus on recent rises in non-communicable diet-related diseases. They will also examine some of the ways that governments and civil society organizations have responded to the public health challenges posed by the rise of highly processed foods in South Africa and Mexico.
With ongoing changes in the political landscape, many people are concerned with food security and how current and potential policy proposals could affect their family and community. On May 17th, the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute will explore the current state of federal, state, and city food security policy by discussing threats and opportunities.
Many New Yorkers have experienced gentrification, the influx of affluent people into low- and moderate-income neighborhoods that often results in residential displacement and profound changes to a community’s racial and ethnic composition, culture, and commerce. On March 29th, the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute will explore the causes and effects of gentrification on local food environments and strategies to ensure access to affordable, healthy food.
Urban Food Policy Forum: Food Policy in New York City Since 2008 Part 2: Lessons for the Next Decade
To mark the release of its new report, Food Policy in New York City Since 2008: Lessons for the Next Decade, the Institute hosts the second of a two-part series looking at the progress the city has made on food policy and what else needs to be done to reduce diet-related disease, food insecurity and other food-related problems. By exploring what New York City has accomplished in food in the last decade, we hope to identify strategies for advancing food equity in New York City in the next 5 to 10 years.
In this session, key New York City food policy makers will discuss how food policy governance works in New York City and what has changed in the last decade.
Urban Food Policy Forum: Food System Issues and Challenges in the US and China in the Trump and Xi Jinping Era
The US and China are witnessing challenges to their dominant (and evolving) food systems. How those challenges are able to influence how, where, and what we eat in light of the issues associated with their food systems is the subject of this talk by Robert Gottlieb.
Calorie or food labeling, misleading food advertising, taxes on sugary beverages, eligibility requirements for public food benefits—all these and more are food policy debates that have reached the court room for resolution. Food and nutrition advocates, government officials and the food industry have each used litigation to advance their food policy objectives. This panel discussion will explore the advantages and disadvantages of litigation as a strategy for policy change and promoting food equity.
This forum focuses on current and future issues facing food workers, particularly those in cities, in the context of changes to the worker/employer relationship brought about by technological advances like increased automation, peer to peer transactions through sharing economy apps like Uber, high-tech urban agriculture, and online meal delivery services. Utilizing food jobs as a lens, we’ll explore how a range of industries continue to evolve as a result of changes in technology and the city, state and federal policies that encourage technological advances.
Andy Fisher, Adjunct Instructor, Portland State University School of Public Health, gave a talk on his new book, Big Hunger: The Unholy Alliance between Corporate America and Anti-Hunger Groups (MIT Press).
A new president and congress have threatened to repeal or weaken many of the accomplishments of the food justice movement won in the last two decades. In the next few years, how can the food movement here in New York City find common ground and common goals with local and national environmental and labor movements, and the movements for immigrant rights, affordable housing and health care reform? What are the specific opportunities in New York City and State for developing common agendas across these movements to resist Trump initiatives that harm health?
Mark Bittman and Local Food Leaders on Building a Food Movement in New York in the Age of Trump (Edible Manhattan) - May 24, 2017
Melissa Checker, Hagedorn Professor of Urban Studies at Queens College and a faculty member in the PhD program in Anthropology at the Graduate Center
Nevin Cohen, Associate Professor, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy & Research Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute. Co-author of Beyond the Kale
Chantal Gailloux, PhD student in Anthropology at Concordia University and PSRG member
Kristin Reynolds, Lecturer, Environmental Studies and Food Studies programs, The New School. Co-author of Beyond the Kale
Benjamin Shepard, City Tech CUNY, garden activist, and author of Rebel Friendships: “Outsider” Networks and Social Movements
Presented by the Borough of Brooklyn Interfaith Advisory Group (BBIAG) and NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Center for Health Equity, Office of Faith Based Initiatives.
Nicholas Freudenberg, Director of the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute, will give the keynote address.
Farmers in Upstate New York provide downstate markets with a wide range of agricultural products. Yet there is still enormous potential for growth. By strengthening the linkages between the two regions New York can become a model for values-driven local food procurement. The CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute is hosting a forum to explore some of the work already moving us in this direction and discuss the opportunities and challenges of expanding regional food procurement and consumption.
The Center for Urban Business Entrepreneurship (CUBE) will host a panel and networking event to discuss the growth of the urban agriculture industry in the Brooklyn and greater New York City communities. Joined by the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President, members of the New York City Council, the NYC Agriculture Collective, and the Design Trust for Public Space, the panel will feature industry leaders and policy experts who will explore the technology and market forces driving innovation in urban agriculture, and chart a legislative path forward to expand existing policy, foster the creation of food production growth opportunities in local communities, and nurture thriving new agriculture businesses.
The Aging in New York Fund is partnering with Jamaica Service Program for Older Adults, the NYC Department for the Aging, State Society on Aging, United Neighborhood Houses of New York and York College - CUNY to host “Hunger, Health, and Aging: A Queens Food Insecurity Forum."
Join premier leaders in healthcare, media, research and community health for a conference dedicated to reviewing the specific ways cardiovascular diseases affect Latinos in the Northeast, and the critical role Latino leaders play in mobilizing the population to help influence behavior.
Nicholas Freudenberg, director of the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute, will speak on a panel discussing food environments.
Urban Food Policy Forum: Evaluating Community Food Programs: What do we know? What do we still need to learn?
Evaluation: Funders demand it, policy makers use it, agency directors want it, front-line staff sometimes resent it, and too often community residents gain nothing from it. Many of the community food programs implemented in New York City in recent years have been evaluated but it’s sometimes been a challenge to translate findings into more effective practice. In this session, panelists engaged at various levels in the evaluation of community food programs will discuss these questions:
Urban Food Policy Forum: New Opportunities for Improving Food within New York City Housing Authority Communities
The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) is the largest public housing authority in North America, representing 8.1 percent of New York City’s rental apartments and housing 4.7 percent of our city’s population. To many planners and health advocates, the NYCHA community is well-positioned for food innovation, which has led to the development of several public/private initiatives encompassing urban agriculture, good food entrepreneurship, and increased quality and quantity of food retail outlets.