Local Food

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The production and consumption of fresh, healthy food is at the heart of a sustainable community and the Board of Commissioners wishes to encourage the local production, processing, distribution and consumption of food in Cabarrus County for a number of reasons.

  1. There is a significant incidence of diet-related disease and poor health (e.g., diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity) in Cabarrus County. The consumption of fresh, nutritious food can prevent and mitigate those diet-related conditions, thereby improving quality of life and reducing health care costs.

  2. Cabarrus County has experienced a great deal of sprawling development which has displaced farms and open space and consumed significant natural and fiscal resources. Policies that promote sustainable agriculture, the preservation of existing farms and the creation of new farms to meet local food needs will keep land in production, preserve our local rural and agricultural heritage, consume minimal public resources and provide an important counterbalance to development.

  3. Cabarrus County’s traditional manufacturing base has diminished significantly with the closing of Pillowtex and Philip Morris. The Great Recession brought historically high unemployment rates. Building a robust, sustainable local food economy serves as a foundation for a resilient local economy that is resistant to downward global trends.

  4. The air quality in Cabarrus County and the Charlotte region does not meet EPA standards. Global carbon emissions are contributing to climate change and peak oil is approaching. One method of addressing these issues is though distributed production, especially of energy and food.

  5. The number of incidents of unsafe and contaminated food being distributed across the nation (and the world) has increased over the last several years. Local production, processing and consumption will improve food safety and security for county residents.