SLC Wants to Know Where Your Food Comes From

(KCPW News) Salt Lake City leaders want to know where you get your food. As part of the city’s Community Food Assessment, it’s launching an online survey aimed at bolstering access to local food by identifying the barriers that prevent residents from getting it. Mayor Ralph Becker notes that starting after World War II, some of the city’s best agricultural land was taken over by development, inhibiting access to locally grown products.

“Most of us have heard the statistic now that the average grocery store item in this country travels over 1,500 miles, and we know that’s not the best way for us to make sure that we have good healthy food and reduce our impact on the environment,” he says.

The city has also rolled out a Community Food Production Mapping Tool, which homeowners can use to estimate how much food their individual properties can grow by entering their address online.

Kevin Bell, the city’s geographic information system engineer, says the average residential lot in Salt Lake City is 0.17 acres.

“…giving about 2,800 square feet for garden space if you were to utilize all of it. That means that you could grow about four months of food on the typical lot,” he explained.

Bell says the city will also soon release a tool showing homeowners how much sunlight their land gets each month.