The food system is a network of structures and organizations which interact to bring food to our tables. This includes businesses, nonprofits, legislators, government agencies, producers, consumers, natural resources, infrastructure -- people and planet. It is regulated by policy at the national, state, and local level. These laws determine the nature of our food system, and thus:
Who has access to food
The quality of food
How much food costs
How workers are treated and compensated
What impact our food system has on the environment
What this means in practice is that when corporate producers are allowed to pollute communities, destroy ecosystems, subject people to dangerous and demeaning working conditions, pay poverty level wages, and produce food that poisons people -- it is the result of policy decisions that have been made.
When the richest country in history produces so much food that it is able to waste 108 billion pounds each year, and yet 42 million Americans experience hunger -- that is the result of policy decisions that have been made.
The Springfield Food Policy Council serves as a forum through which the community of Springfield can envision and advocate for equitable policy choices, with the purpose of building a food system that supports all people in living long and healthy lives.