2018 National Planning Conference

Inclusive Food Economy: Greater Than Access

Sunday, April 22, 2018 from 2:45 p.m. - 4 p.m. CDT

Location: R01

CM | 1.25

Cost: Included in Registration

Activity Type: Educational Sessions

Activity ID: NPC188112


  • How to assess the existing food environment in low-income communities, including the inventory of fresh and prepared food purveyors, zoning and regulatory issues, and available incentives
  • How to research unique consumer profiles and behaviors, as well as broaden the list of opportunities to improve food access beyond what is sometimes considered
  • Strategies to build new — and bolster existing — food-based businesses through targeted investments, updated policies, and community buy-in


Food policy and funding have historically and primarily been linked to the ability provide fresh fruit, vegetables, and other healthy foods to communities (often low-income and of color) that lack grocery stores and farmers markets. Most of these policies and funding options are rooted in incentivizing and securing national grocery chains. Examine alternative models to this traditional approach and several real-life, market-appropriate cases that illustrate innovative food-access and equity strategies. Examine how Flint, Michigan, successfully transitioned from a national grocer-recruitment strategy to support for local grocers that have expanded food access in the communities they serve. Explore the carryout-restaurant landscape in Wards 7 and 8 in Washington, D.C., and initiatives other cities launched to improve the health of carryout offerings. The session will also address challenges to jump-starting the Takoma Park Community Kitchen, which focuses on low-income, minority food entrepreneurs, and how it relates to a broader food-based business incubator strategy for Montgomery County, Maryland.

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Session Speakers

Christie Balch
Crossroads Community Food Network
Takoma Park, MD

Bobby L. Boone, AICP
Washington, DC

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