ANDERSON — Madison County Local Food Network will host its 2022 Food Summit on Feb. 22. It will be a chance for the community to learn about local food issues.
Langa Floyd, member of the network board, said topics being discussed will be useful for anyone who participates in the food system.
“If you eat, if you work with food, if you are a food entrepreneur, if you grow food, then this is for you.”
One major food accessibility issue in the county is transportation.
“We have the food pantries, but maybe people aren’t able to get there,” Floyd said.
One of the breakout sessions will focus on food mobility, which covers how people can get to food and how food can get to people.
Another issue is food deserts. For example, the west side of Anderson is a food desert, as there are no grocery stores readily available to residents.
Most of the summit’s breakout sessions will focus on food issues throughout the county, including how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected various aspects of getting food.
The keynote speaker for the 2022 Food Summit will be Linda Broadfoot, CEO of Second Helpings in Indianapolis.
“Not a lot of people are familiar with what Second Helpings does. They are a major player in eliminating food insecurity, food waste (and) food access,” Floyd said.
Broadfoot will discuss what Second Helpings does, how it operates, some challenges it has experienced and how it’s adjusted during the pandemic.
“Our keynote is from outside the county and is bringing in new resource(s) and information for us,” said Chelsie Jaramillo, one of three rotating secretaries for Madison County Local Food Network.
There also will be a panel discussion, which will focus on collaborations that the food network has done within the county.
Additionally, local educators will lead cooking demonstrations.
Whether you are a stay-at-home mom or college student, Floyd recommends that you consider attending the food summit, as they want to engage with every demographic.
The food summit will be from noon to 5 p.m. at Anderson Impact Center, 630 Nichol Ave. The summit also will have a virtual option. Cost is $15, with a meal provided for those attending in person. Registration on eventbrite.com will close at 10 p.m. Friday, Feb. 18.
Follow Kylee Mullikin on Twitter @kyleemullikinhb or call 765-640-4250.