What does the Whatcom Food Network do?

The Whatcom Food Network aims to increase communication, coordination, and collaboration among local and regional food system-related organizations. Through online communication tools and Network events, organizations can share information, pursue projects of mutual benefit, and develop community initiatives to strengthen the local food system.

What is a "Food System"?

A food system is made up of all the interdependent people and processes that provide food to a community; this includes a cycle of producing, storing, processing, transporting, marketing, retailing, preparing, and eating food. You can learn more about our local food resources and the challenges that need to be addressed by reading the Whatcom County Community Food Assessment.

What is the network trying to acheive?

Our local and regional food system is supported by a large and diverse array of organizations, agencies, and institutions. By increasing our understanding of each other’s work and coordinating our efforts, we will be better able to strengthen our local food economy and ensure that current and future generations of Whatcom County residents have access to healthy food.

Who is organizing the Whatcom Food Network?

A Steering Committee and Coordinating Team work to maintain the systems of the Network, on behalf of the Members. The Steering Committee is composed of 10-14 representatives of WFN member organizations, the Coordinating Team is a smaller group, which includes representatives from lead agencies.

Why would our organization join the network?

Joining the Network will help you to connect with other organizations that are working on different aspects of the food system and stay informed about initiatives that that might advance your organization’s work. It will help you forge new partnerships with groups and individuals that have related goals, and help you avoid duplication of effort. You can join the Network simply by signing a Declaration of Support.

What kind of a time commitment does this mean?

There is no required time commitment, just a variety of opportunities. You can come to the bi-annual forums, utilize the Network listserv, participate in the Network Steering Committee or Action Groups, or simply use the contacts and resources available through the website to connect with others and pursue partnerships or projects.

Is there a fee for belonging?

Currently there is no fee to join the Network. We are grateful for the funding we have received from the St. Luke’s Foundation and the Whatcom Community Foundation Sustainable Whatcom Fund, and the staff and volunteer time committed by various organizations to create and maintain the Network.

What information will be listed on the WFN website about us?

Member organizations will have their organization name and website address listed on the Whatcom Food Network website.

How can I get involved, if I do not represent an organization?

Individuals who would like to be involved in Network activities are welcome to attend Forums and participate in Action Groups. Sign the Declaration of Support as “an individual”–and you will be considered an Associate of the Network.