Denver

Setting ‘Mile High’ Goals to Advance Collective Good Food Purchasing

In 2015, the City of Denver undertook an extensive stakeholder engagement process to publish its ambitious Denver Food Vision 2030. To help meet those goals, local leaders are implementing the Good Food Purchasing Program as a key strategy toward creating more racially-equitable communities, improving rural-urban connections, and strengthening local economies.

Population:
727,211
Race Demographics:
9% Black / 0.9% Indigenous / 4% Asian / 0.2% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander / 76% White / 4% Two or More Races / 30% Hispanic
Poverty Rate:
13%
Denver Public School Free and Reduced Price Lunch:
62%
Estimated Public Food Spend:
$37,000,000
Local Leadership:
Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council, Denver Food Systems Administrator, Denver Good Food Coalition

Curious to see where Denver institutions can invest their public food dollars locally? Use the map’s radius distance slider (left) to see how purchasing within a 50 mile, 250 mile, or 500 mile radius looks.

Participation in the Good Food Purchasing Program by all public Denver institutions could*:

Create 33 local jobs equivalent to $1.64 million in annual local wages

Denver’s plan to build a strong regional food economy includes creating food workforce development programs and supporting community ownership of food businesses.

Reduce chronic disease risk by 1.48% equivalent to $118,000 in annual healthcare savings

The city prioritizes children's nutrition by providing healthy food and food-based education for Denver’s youth.

Engage community members in defining their food system

Community partnerships and stakeholder input are central to Denver’s vision for an inclusive, vibrant, healthy, and resilient food system.

*Impacts are calculated based on estimated annual regional food spend. These are the estimated impacts of increasing 30% of current spending on local products and increasing 30% of current purchases of fruits and vegetables, without changing total food spend. For additional detail, download the methodology.

"The Good Food Purchasing Program has spurred Denver institutions to use their purchasing power to support Colorado producers and essential workers while ensuring public contracts reflect community values."

Marion Kalb - Institutional Food Program Administrator, Department of Public Health & Environment


See how other cities are making a difference.