Good Food Purchasing Policy

One of the best ways to change the food system on a large scale is to change the way the government spends its food dollars.

On October 24, 2012, the City of Los Angeles adopted a Good Food Purchasing Policy. Soon after, Los Angeles Unified School District followed…

Two years later, they have tested the program and made it replicable to places like, oh, the City of Long Beach, let’s say!

The Los Angeles Food Policy Council did the heavy lifting — they lead a broad coalition to establish the philosophy, planning and execution for a good food purchasing policy: they have rated over 2,000 farms in the local food-shed on five dimensions: labor practices, sustainability, locality, humaneness and healthiness.

And now, the Los Angeles Food Policy Council is making their procurement databases, accounting practices and program support available to us. In turn, it’s our job to work with the City of Long Beach and other large food-buying institutions to establish a good food policy that will “…increase market demand for Good Food, increase access to high-quality healthy food in undeserved communities, and shift production practices by leveraging the purchasing power of major institutions. ”

Let’s do this!


  • Work closely with the City of Long Beach and Long Beach Unified School District to establish a Good Food Purchasing Policy
  • Work with the City of Long Beach and the Los Angeles Good Food Policy Council to bring their practices and assets for good food purchasing to Long Beach

What We Need:

  • Continue to grow support in neighborhoods, organizations and city leaders who will help champion this policy
  • Tiffany Chen from the Office of Sustainability – City of Long Beach is helping us connect with the Convention Center and departments who may be interested
  • Connect the LA Food Policy Council with Long Beach Unified School District’s Nutrition Services Department to do a baseline assessment of the School District’s food purchasing.
  • Use the baseline assessment to co-create a strategy to adopt and adhere to the Good Food Purchasing Policy

Latest Status:

  • 8/1/14 Met with the Los Angeles Food Policy Council and learned about the Good Food Purchasing Policy and what assets the LAFPC would be able to make available to large food purchasing institutions in Long Beach
  • 8/14/14 Met on the phone with a broader coalition of LAFPC staff to go step-by-step through the implementation process
  • 9/3/14 Reached out to City of LB Sustainaibility Commissioners and Staff about the LAFPC Good Food Purchasing Policy
  • 9/29/14 Met with Eaters, Feeders, and Seeders to educate them on the LAFPC GFFP
  • 11/5/14 Met with Mayor’s Office, Councilmember Dee Andrews’ Office, Councilmember Rex Richardson’s Office, Sustianability and Health Department Staff to discuss the Good Food Purchasing policy. Outcomes are recorded above in “What We Need”
  • 12/3/14 Met with Shawna Stevens from Councilmember Rex Richardson’s office to discuss the Good Food Purchasing policy. Stevens said the health of kids and families is a high priority for him,
  • 1/14/15 Met with Broc Coward of Councilmember Suja Lowenthal’s office to discuss the Good Food Purchasing policy. Coward suggested we meet with the Department of Parks & Recreation who is distributing over 120,000 meals every summer.
  • 1/30/15 Visited Cabrillo High School’s lunch room and student store and spoke with staff about barriers to better food. The lunch room suggested we work with Nutrition Services. We also learned about what’s popular and how kids select items.
  • 2/10/15 Learned more about the horrific conditions of labor in farming at a screening and panel of the documentary, “Food Chains
  • 3/6/15 We received the food procurement dollars expended by the City of Long Beach by Department. We are excited to learn that the Departments of Park, Recreation and Marine and Human and Health Services are the largest purchasers of food.
  • 4/10/15 Met with LBUSD School Boardmember, Megan Kerr, who suggested we meet with Nutrition Services and Boardmember John McGinnis to discuss the Good Food Purchasing policy
  • 4/30/15 Met with LBUSD Nutrition Services to discuss and prepare for our discussion about the Good Food Purchasing Policy. We answered questions regarding other organizatons working on baseline assessments including the Oakland School District and Google’s main campus in Silicone Valley.
  • 5/1/15 Met with LBUSD Nutrition Services to discuss the good work they’re doing and their openness to work with Long Beach Fresh on an internal baseline assessment with our counterparts in Los Angeles.
  • 5/28/15 LBUSD Nutrition Services took 10 food access community partners on a tour of the centralized food production facility where lots of Long Beach school food is produced.
  • 6/24/15 Met with LBUSD Nutrition Services director and purchasing staff and the Center for Good Food Purchasing, and agreed to move forward in a baseline assessment of food procurement this summer.
  • 6/26/15 Met with RUSD Nutrition Services director Rodney Taylor to learn best practices for good food procurement in schools and potential for the school district to become a food hub.
  • 7/23/15 Established a deadline of October 8th with LBUSD to acquire data from distributors for baseline assessment of food procurement.
  • 2/16/16 Completed a draft internal report on procurement for LBUSD Nutrition Services with the help of their staff and the Center for Good Food Purchasing, set some goals
  • 10/11/16 LBUSD announced new changes to school food, including an effort to cut styrofoam, diversify food options, and begin serving more cut fruits and veggies to students.
  • 11/3/16 LB Fresh contracts a new Good Food Procurement Program coordinator to focus on carrying the efforts forward with more buy-in from City staff and large institutions.


Get Involved:

Read the latest status, think about how you want to get involved, and contact us.