Access to healthy, affordable food is vital for a sustainable community.

A healthy food system is integral to the health and well-being of our community. The food system comprises all the way in which food moved from farm (or producer) to table (consumer). That includes the farms on which it's grown, the manufacturers who process and produce roods, the venues in which the food are delivered to the public and the way the consumer receives and consumes food.

Food sytems work is important and integral to city priorities for the following reasons:

  • The health of people and our planet. Rising obesity and diet-related diseases cost money and lives. Chemically intensive agriculture degrades the quality of our land, our air, and our water. 
  • Equity and social justice. One in five children in King County does not always have enough to eat, and healthy food is even harder for some to afford. Food inequities disproportionately affect low-income residents, children, seniors, and communities of color. 
  • Economy and community. Local food is a growing sector of the food economy. Growing, eating, and sharing food brings communities together.

Seattle has made a healthy food system a priority. The City of Seattle's vision for a healthy food system is guided by the Food Action Plan. Nearly every department at the City is engaged in reaching the goals in the Plan, with the Office of Sustainability and Environment coordinating this work.

OSE's Key Initiatives

Fresh Bucks
Fresh Bucks doubles the value of SNAP benefits redemeed at Seattle Farmers Markets, up to $10 per day.
Food Action Plan
Seattle's vision for a healthy food system is guided by the Food Action Plan. Nearly all of the City's food initiatives originate from this Plan.

Supporting access to healthy food for all residents

The Fresh Bucks program has had a visible impact in Seattle since it's launch two years ago.

Participating markets 7 17
Individuals impacted 1,500 2,600
Total $ to local farmers $70,000 $151,000
Economic impact in local economy $125,300 Not yet available
New low-income farmers market shoppers 905 1144
Individuals who reported eating more fruits and vegetables because of Fresh Bucks 85% 90%
Individuals who reported Fresh Bucks has made a difference in their families' diets 81% 94%