Key Organizations and Activities
The Community Action Program of East Central Oregon completed a community food assessment for East Central Oregon, including Morrow County, in 2010.
Columbia Plateau Food Links is a regional group of individuals and organizations networking to promote and coordinate a healthy, sustainable and economically viable community food system. An associated Facebook page provides posting on regional farm and food events.
A Umatilla-Morrow County Food Guide was published in 2011.
Umatilla Morrow Headstart offers Cooking Matters classes.
Other local resources appear to be focused primarily on emergency food assistance.
Community Goals and Recommendations
The 2010 Community Food Assessment included the following priorities:
- Explore and support community-appropriate, small-scale food production.
- Assess concerns for beginning farmers, including in the Hispanic community.
- Consider new or alternative small-scale production models and strategies.
- Encourage development of more local food and farm entrepreneurial opportunities, specifically farm stands, u-pick and greenhouse operations.
- Increase number of venues buying and selling local or regional food.
- Establish school-based food programs: Farm-to-School, gardens. summer lunch, and snack programs.
- Engage large purchasers (hospitals, retailers, etc.) about local or regional food.
- Expand educational opportunities for community members.
- Increase availability of resources for community and home gardeners.
- Expand agricultural opportunities for youth, focusing on new and alternative crops, value-added ventures, and business education.
- Increase outreach and networking around local food and farm opportunities.
- Develop and implement a public education campaign on the benefits of healthy eating habits and a local food system
- Ensure regular access to a stable fresh food supply for all citizens year-round.
These are worthy goals, but will require more community engagement to achieve.