Food Systems Team

MN350 is joining the movement for a food system that is local, regenerative, equitable toward those who depend on it, and mindful of its impact on future generations
Campaign Spotlight:

Let's put our money where our mouths are


From source to table, the industrial food economy is dependent on practices that contaminate and destroy ecosystems and contribute to greenhouse gases – and we’re paying for it. Instead, we can meet the demands of water, food, and climate by investing in a regenerative economy designed to connect urban and rural communities through the food that we share.

Add your support to the Headwaters Community Food and Water Bill (HF1332/SF1580), a visionary piece of legislation that will invest our public dollars in the resilient, regenerative, and inclusive food economy that we need.


Who we are

We are people who eat food, and we bet you are, too! But our “food system” – everything from agricultural production (crops and livestock) to food preparation, consumption, and waste – contributes 26% of our greenhouse gas emissions here in Minnesota. That’s on par with transportation and energy production, so if you’ve considered solutions like electric vehicles or ending the use of fossil gas or stopping a pipeline, you might want to also consider taking a closer look at the food on your plate. The good news is, we already know there is a better way to do it – and everyone who depends on food has something to contribute to the resilient, regenerative, and inclusive food economy we need in order to meet the challenge of climate change.

 

What we do

The work of the MN350 Food Systems Team was originally inspired by the science of Project Drawdown, and incorporates MN350’s vision of a just transition to a sustainable, life-affirming economy, led by the communities who have been most impacted by the extractive, consumption-based economy currently funded by our tax dollars. Our three work groups are based on three food-system “solutions” from Drawdown that are already being implemented in Minnesota:

  • Regeneration. Transitioning Minnesota’s industrial farming practices to a regenerative agricultural system will support healthy soil and land, draw atmospheric carbon into the ground rather than releasing it, and reduce water use; but to be truly regenerative, our food system must value the health of our communities as well as the health of our ecosystems. Our Regenerative Agriculture group is currently putting pressure on lawmakers to create and enforce policies that support regenerative agriculture and find ways to connect both established and emerging farmers to resources they need to “go regenerative.”
  • Empowering eaters. Plant-rich diets, which substantially reduce food systems’ greenhouse gas and water-use footprints, will be a crucial tool in meeting our goal of 350 ppm. To encourage the shift, our Plant-Rich Diet team takes aim at the structural barriers to adopting a plant-rich diet.
  • Reducing food waste. The food we throw away accounts for roughly 8% of all human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. Our Food Waste Team works to close the gaps that lead to food waste in Minnesota, from supporting food redistribution efforts that get food to the communities that need it most, to helping local restaurants get the resources they need to reduce their waste streams through our Clean Plate Club campaign.

All three of our work groups contribute to our policy and public outreach efforts:

  • The Headwaters Campaign. We’re leading the movement behind the Headwaters Community Food and Water Bill, a bold vision for a resilient, publicly-funded food system designed to move us together toward a sustainable food future.
  • Nourish by MN350. Our volunteer-produced podcast features the visionary leaders who are creating the regenerative, inclusive, local food economy we need to meet the challenge of climate change.

 

How to get involved

The Food Systems Team meets online from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on alternating Thursdays. We share upcoming opportunities to get involved, give updates on current activities and campaigns, and often include a training or presentation to further our understanding of the food system. For specific dates, check out the Events Calendar.

To learn more about any of our work groups or campaigns, email Lisa Chou, our team leader.