Just 28 percent of Minneapolis low-income residents eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables each day, according to the Minneapolis Health Department. The city plans to advocate Food Day on Oct. 24 as a way to inspire locals to get involved through donating food and educating themselves.
In Minneapolis and across the country, health enthusiasts will be celebrating Food Day, encouraging people to cook, eat and buy healthy foods like fresh vegetables and fruits and to support their local farms.
The day’s nationwide theme this year is “Toward a Greener Diet.”
The city is hoping to get locals engaged through a number of different avenues. Suggestions include connecting with local food shelves, hosting a healthy food drive, planting a garden and donating food and money to local food shelves.
Instead of hosting an event this year, Minneapolis Health Department Senior Public Health Specialist Kristen Klinger, said the city’s goal was to “encourage people to collect healthy food donations for local food shelves, which is one of the focus areas of the national Food Day effort this year.”
As a more specific way to participate, Minneapolis will see several events in honor of Food Day, including a healthy lunch through Minneapolis Public Schools and a food expo at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
Celebrating Food Day fits with multiple city initiatives, including Homegrown Minneapolis, which promotes community involvement with the growth, process, expansion, distribution, eating and composting of healthier, locally grown foods.
Another city-sponsored initiative is Healthy Eating, which is a partnership between Minneapolis and local establishments, like schools and clinics, to help residents eat healthier food.
Food Day 2014 hosted more than 8,000 events, including community festivals, panel discussions and school activities, and they occurred all over the country.
Reporter Kendall Moon is studying journalism at the University of Minnesota.