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Advisory Commission on Food Policy, City of Hartford

The City of Hartford’s Advisory Commission on Food Policy is charged with integrating all city agencies in a common effort to improve the availability of safe and nutritious food at reasonable prices for residents. Established in 1991, the Commission is guided by four goals: 1) Eliminate hunger as an obstacle to a happy, healthy, and productive life in the city. 2) Ensure that a wide variety of safe and nutritious food is available for city residents. 3) Ensure that access to food is not limited by economic status, location, or other factors beyond a resident’s control. 4) Ensure that the price of food in the city remains at a level approximating the level for the state.

In March of 2013, the Commission released recommendations for increased food security in Hartford. Of the nine recommendations, three focused specifically on healthy food access. The Commission proposed exploring and implementing tax incentives and economic benefits for healthy food businesses. In response to survey findings on the availability, pricing, and quality of fruits and vegetables, the Commission advised that the city help improve the business infrastructure and sales of these markets to support the local economy. Lastly, they suggested increased support for the development of a Hartford Food Hub. Read more about the recommendations here.

Healthy Food Retailer Incentive

In 2006, Hartford Food System (HFS) launched the Healthy Food Retailer Initiative program. HFS partners with corner stores to increase the availability of healthy food in the city. HFS works with stores to discuss, identify, and document best practices for healthy food retailing, including elements such as marketing, licensing, access to storage and display equipment, and purchasing cooperatives. They also help store owners comply with the WIC program and municipal food licensing requirements. Within a year of the launch, HFS measured an 8% shift in the percentage of healthy food offerings across 23 stores. Learn more about the Healthy Food Retailer Incentive here.

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