Food Security in Nevada

From small, rural towns to inner-city neighborhoods, communities in Nevada possess an unrealized potential to strengthen sustenance and nutrition programs and ensure a robust and affordable food system for the entire state. This can include the promotion of local businesses that grow and distribute food to create economic vitality. Nevada’s future can be one where farmers work with school districts to provide fresh fruits and vegetables for students’ meals, and where neighbors coordinate with neighbors to start community-supported agriculture projects. It can be a place where service providers from across the state help their clients obtain food and nutrition resources, while also providing skills and information to prepare healthy, nutritious meals. By leveraging their strengths and relationships with one another, communities in Nevada can vastly reduce or eliminate the hunger gap.

The community food security movement encourages all members to invest and be active in the wellbeing of the community at multiple levels. Through a network of local and corporate supermarkets, farmer’s markets, community gardens, and anti‐hunger initiatives, Nevada can create a distinct food web that minimizes barriers to food access. This system enables more families to purchase nutritious and culturally-sensitive ingredients that allow them to prepare wholesome meals for children and the elderly. Beyond the family sphere, local institutions such as schools and health centers partner with other community actors, area farmers, social justice workers, and religious leaders to construct programs and services that improve the overall quality of life. This is possible in Nevada.

In March 2012, The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Grants Management Unit (GMU) implemented a strategic planning process intended to address food security in Nevada. The purpose was to bring together stakeholders across the state to develop a plan designed to increase food security in Nevada. This plan is a result of those efforts.