2013 FPAC Year in Review

TFPAC_logohe Food Policy Advisory Council of Philadelphia (FPAC) is a Mayor-appointed body that facilitates the development of responsible policies that improve access for Philadelphia residents to culturally appropriate, nutritionally sound, and affordable food that is grown locally through environmentally sustainable practices. Thanks to the hard work and sustained collaborative effort between FPAC appointed members, supporters, and staff, the FPAC had a productive 2013 and is looking forward to maintaining that momentum in 2014.

Below is an overview of the FPAC’s accomplishments last year. If you would like to get involved in any of the sub-committees, please email fpac@phila.gov.

Questions about FPAC’s 2013 or plans for the coming year? Join FPAC Coordinator Hannah Chatterjee for a live Twitter Q&A on Friday, April 4th from noon to 1PM @GreenworksPhila (use #phillyfpac).

  • General FPAC

The Council established 2 new sub-committees to tackle issues thus far unaddressed by the FPAC, Local Food Procurement and Zero Waste, and also reconvened the Anti-Hunger sub-committee. Appointed members adopted 5 articles for the FPAC by-laws (review them here). The Council appointed 14 new members, and secured a full-time FPAC Coordinator.

Appointed members adopted a standing meeting time and location for the 2014 general FPAC meetings, taking place on the first Wednesday of every other month starting in February, from 3pm to 5pm on the 18th floor of the One Parkway Building (1515 Arch St), Room 18-022.

  • Anti-Hunger Sub-committee

The Anti-Hunger sub-committee reconvened in October 2013 with 6 core members.

Sub-committee members hosted the first FPAC town hall in November 2013 – a focus group with restaurant industry workers surveying participants about their habits and practices around healthy food, food access, and the internet.

Surprisingly, the town hall results showed that 72% of the participants are online more than 5 hours a day, and that many of the participants had no idea where to go for information about food resources such as SNAP and food pantries. The sub-committee will use the information gathered at the town hall to inform the food resources toolkit that the members are currently developing in order to mitigate the effects of the November 2013 SNAP budget cuts.

  • Communications and Outreach Sub-committee

Sub-committee members drafted the Media and Communications Guidelines outlining the FPAC’s internal and external communications strategy (adopted June 2013). The FPAC is committed to interacting more with the Philadelphia community, and will be sending members out to speak and table at community events, for which the sub-committee developed FPAC outreach materials. If you know of a community-based organization whose members might like to hear more about the FPAC, please get in touch with chair Hannah Chatterjee.

  • Governance and Membership Sub-committee

Sub-committee members drafted the following 4 articles for the by-laws:

Interim Member Nomination, Application, and Appointment Process Article, standardizing the nomination process for future FPAC members through the member nomination form (approved January 2013); Duties of Appointed Members, Co-chairs and Coordinator Article, detailing the responsibilities of each position on the FPAC (approved April 2013); Attendance Policy for Appointed Members (approved April 2013); Resignation Policy (approved April 2013). The sub-committee is currently working on a Conflict of Interest Policy for the FPAC.

  •  Local Food Procurement Sub-committee

The Local Food Procurement Sub-committee was established in May 2013. Sub-committee members have begun a conversation about and are currently planning the next steps for a project that will adapt the city’s procurement policies to encourage the purchase of local food. The sub-committee is looking to start a pilot program with a City agency in 2014.

  •  Vacant Land Sub-committee

With full support from the FPAC, the Land Bank Bill was passed in December 2013.

As the new bill gets rolled out, the sub-committee along with several partners will conduct a vacant land inventory project that will provide critical data and information on the usability of vacant lots for urban agriculture and gardens.

  • Zero Waste Sub-committee

The Zero Waste Sub-committee was established in October 2013. Members are working on a white paper to determine how the City can support waste minimization, composting, and recycling in Philadelphia in order to achieve “zero waste.” The sub-committee has started by assembling information about problems related to food waste, and plans to encourage more commercial food composting and recycling to build on the policies and infrastructure that are already in place.

Looking Ahead to Greenworks 2014

Note: This blog is the first in a series of posts going behind the scenes of the process of producing the 2014 progress report for Greenworks Philadelphia.

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An in-progress look at laying out the 2014 Greenworks update.

With only two years left before the conclusion of Mayor Nutter’s second term in office, the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability (MOS) is preparing the fifth Greenworks progress report. This year, we want to give partners and stakeholders in Philadelphia and beyond a peek at how these progress reports are put together.

As a first step, our team is thinking about those areas where Philadelphia has made some of the biggest strides in the five Greenworks goal areas (energy, environment, equity, economy, and engagement) over the past year, and where the most exciting opportunities for 2014 will be. Here are a few we’ve considered:

  • Greenhouse Gas inventories and climate adaptation strategy:  Both MOS and the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) are continuing to track greenhouse gas emissions. Our office will release new data in 2014 highlighting some of the keys trends in emissions (and prime opportunities for emissions abatement). But it’s not enough to just monitor emissions. This spring, MOS will meet with agencies throughout city government to help draft an action plan to adapt Philadelphia’s critical infrastructure and services to a changing climate.
  • Municipal and citywide building benchmarking: MOS recently released a report on the energy usage of municipally-owned buildings for 2011, and results for large non-residential buildings 50,000 square feet or larger for both 2012 and 2013 energy and water usage will be released later this year. Benchmarking helps building owners and operators track their utility usage over time and compare that usage to a national average. Buildings can use this information to reduce their bills and their greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Food Policy Advisory Council: Thanks to the hard work of FPAC coordinator Hannah Chatterjee, the City’s commitment to improving access to healthy and farm-fresh food is stronger than ever. Hannah will be writing more about FPAC’s work on this blog in the coming weeks.
  • Bike Share: Our office is excited to be supporting the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities in the upcoming launch of the citywide bike share network. The City is currently considering several proposals for the program, and we hope to be writing much more about it in Greenworks 2014 (and using the bikes this fall!).
  • Waste Watchers:  At the 2013 Philadelphia Marathon, hundreds of volunteers once again gave their time to help divert waste to recycling while cheering on the city’s runners. MOS is excited to be expanding this program in 2014 thanks to a grant by the Bloomberg Foundation, which will help support Waste Watchers volunteers at six events between now and Spring 2015—including the 2014 Philadelphia Marathon.

What are you hoping to see MOS cover in Greenworks 2014? Respond below or tweet us @GreenworksPhila to share your thoughts.

City of Philadelphia Releases Serve Philadephia 3-Year Progress Report

October 30, 2013 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter and the Mayor’s Office of Civic Engagement and Volunteer Service released the SERVE Philadelphia 3-Year Progress Report, which outlines the City’s efforts to strategically engage citizens in addressing local challenges, particularly in the areas of education, food security, community revitalization and youth engagement.

“By uniting volunteers from different organizations around common goals, we are maximizing their collective impact and empowering citizens with diverse expertise to invest their time and talent in Philadelphia’s future,” said Mayor Nutter. “This effort has led to truly great things for the City of Philadelphia: thousands of adults coaching high school students to graduation, a significant increase in volunteers working with adult learners, stronger Park Friends Groups, greater collaboration between programs that serve our seniors, and many other volunteer-led initiatives that make our communities safer, stronger and more vibrant.”

Highlights of the report include:

· About 50 AmeriCorps VISTAs serving in City departments have engaged over 10,000 volunteers since 2010 in advancing priority initiatives, including the Mayor’s Graduation Coach Campaign and the PhillyRising Collaborative.

· 70,000 citizens have participated in the annual Philly Spring Clean Up since 2008, clearing more than 8 million pounds of trash and recycling from city streets and neighborhood parks.

· 110,000 individuals have visited http://www.SERVEPhiladelphia.com since January 2011, 30% of whom return on a regular basis to sign up for volunteer opportunities.

“The success of SERVE Philadelphia is far from the story of a single office or initiative. Instead, it reflects the collective commitment of City departments, working in partnership with Philadelphia’s outstanding non-profit sector and civically minded corporate community, to increase both the rate and impact of volunteer service,” said Catie C. Wolfgang, Chief Service Officer and Director of the Mayor’s Office of Civic Engagement and Volunteer Service. “Most of all, it is a testimony to the willingness of every day citizens to roll up their sleeves and get to work on the challenges we face as a community.”

Mayor Nutter, First Round Capital and PIDC Announce First Startup PHL Seed Fund Investment

Real Food Works moves headquarters to Philadelphia, receives $200,000 seed investment.

October 24, 2013 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter, along with First Round Capital and the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC), announced that Real Food Works will receive the first investment from the Startup PHL Seed Fund. Real Food Works partners with local restaurants to provide customers with healthy prepared meals. It will receive a $200,000 investment from the Startup PHL Seed Fund.

“The goal of Startup PHL is to help innovative new companies to start and grow in Philadelphia, and this investment in Real Food Works is an example of that strategy,” said Mayor Nutter. “Lucinda and her team have created a company that supports the local economy and encourages people to eat healthy food. This investment will allow Real Food Works to continue growing and is the first of many investments in Philadelphia startups that will be made through Startup PHL.”

Real Food Works will receive a $200,000 investment from the Startup PHL Seed Fund, a $6 million seed stage investment fund, in which both PIDC and First Round Capital have invested $3 million. First Round Capital manages the fund.

John Grady, President of PIDC said, “We are proud of our partnership with First Round Capital and the City of Philadelphia to launch the Startup PHL Seed fund to increase the availability of seed-stage capital and to help make Philadelphia an attractive place for entrepreneurs. As a successful startup that has relocated to Philadelphia, Real Food Works is a perfect demonstration of the power of the Startup PHL Seed Fund making the City a great environment to launch and grow business.”

First Round Capital Managing Partner Josh Kopelman said, “We are excited to contribute to the growing vibrancy of the Philadelphia startup ecosystem, to be working with innovative partners, the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation and the City of Philadelphia. We are thrilled that our first investment together is in such a great company and entrepreneur. Real Food Works is tapping into an important trend of healthier eating, and the company’s scalable model and technology promises great growth. And, of course, backing a proven entrepreneur gives us tremendous confidence.”

Lucinda Duncalfe, Founder and CEO of Real Food Works, created the company after being inspired to eat a more healthy diet. She founded Real Food Works in May 2012 and incubated the company at Monetate in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania. In June 2013, Duncalfe moved Real Food Works to Philadelphia, where it is currently located at 224 North Juniper Street. Real Food Works employs 10 people.

“The investments from First Round Capital, Startup PHL and Benjamin Franklin Technology Partners are a vote of confidence in Real Food Works’ vision, technology, and team,” said Duncalfe. “We’re grateful for their support, and look forward to working together to make our dream of a healthier America based on a real food diet a reality.”

Benjamin Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern PA is also an investor in Real Food Works. President and CEO RoseAnn Rosenthal added, “We’re happy to, once more, be an investor in one of Lucinda’s ventures. We’ve partnered in the past and are thrilled to see her launch yet another enterprise. Her actions reflect the commitment and confidence of entrepreneurs who have achieved success, here, and who are choosing to do it again, here.”

Mayor Nutter launched the Startup PHL initiative in October 2012. In March 2013, the City and PIDC announced that First Round Capital would manage the Startup PHL Seed Fund. The Startup PHL Call for Ideas, another portion of the initiative, is designed to provide small grants to organizations working to support entrepreneurs in Philadelphia. The second round of funding will be announced next week by the Department of Commerce, led by Alan Greenberger, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development.

“Philadelphia is increasingly seen as a home for startups, entrepreneurs and investment with more and more companies locating here” said Greenberger. “Startup PHL is the City’s effort – in partnership with First Round Capital and PIDC – to support this growth and attract new job-creating businesses, firmly establishing Philadelphia as a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship.”

Startup PHL:
Startup PHL is a collaborative effort between the City of Philadelphia Department of Commerce and the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC). The Startup PHL Seed Fund is an effort by the City of Philadelphia and PIDC to increase the availability of investment capital for Philadelphia-based startups. The Startup PHL Call for Ideas is a grant program to support innovative proposals for ideas that support business creation and entrepreneurs of all stripes in Philadelphia. More information about Startup PHL can be found at http://www.startupphl.com. More information about the City of Philadelphia Department of Commerce can be found at http://www.phila.gov/commerce.

Real Food Works:
Real Food Works delivers fresh meals made with only all-natural whole food ingredients. The meals are developed and cooked fresh by a network of local independent restaurants, which create specific meals to meet the real food diet’s nutritional requirements — ensuring delicious, nutritious food. The real food diet has been popularized in New York Times bestsellers, including The China Study, VB6, and Whole, the Amazon best-selling documentary Forks over Knives, and by celebrities including Alec Baldwin, Gwyneth Paltrow and Alicia Silverstone. Located in Philadelphia, the company was founded by seasoned entrepreneur and healthy food fanatic Lucinda Duncalfe and is backed by leading investors. For more information, visit https://www.realfoodworks.com/.

Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation:
Beginning in 1958 as a non-profit joint venture between the City of Philadelphia and the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, PIDC is Philadelphia’s economic development corporation. In the past 55 years, PIDC has invested more than $11.4 billion in Philadelphia supporting $21 billion of total project costs. Currently managing a diverse loan portfolio in excess of $600 million, PIDC brings years of experience and a wealth of knowledge to structuring real estate and financing transactions that attract investment and create and retain jobs in the City of Philadelphia. PIDC has partnered with First Round Capital to create a $6 million public/private venture fund, the Startup PHL Seed Fund. Both PIDC and First Round Capital have invested $3 million and First Round Capital manages the fund increase the availability of investment capital for Philadelphia-based entrepreneurs.

Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania:
Celebrating its 30th Anniversary, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania is a national, award winning organization that provides capital, knowledge and networks that help innovative enterprises generate jobs and economic growth. Ben Franklin is the single largest investor in seed-stage companies in this region, and is one of the most active seed-stage investors in the United States. Three-quarters of all recent venture funded companies in the Greater Philadelphia region had previously received funding from Ben Franklin. The Ben Franklin Technology Partners is an initiative of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and is funded by the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority.

MAYOR NUTTER SIGNS EXECUTIVE ORDER; CREATES THE PHILADELPHIA FOOD ACCESS COLLABORATIVE

Philadelphia, December 18, 2012–  Mayor Michael A. Nutter signed an Executive Order creating the Philadelphia Food Access Collaborative, the coordinating body that will address the recommendations of the Mayor’s Task Force on Outdoor Serving of Food to improve access to free meals for individuals in need.  The Philadelphia Food Access Collaborative will convene appointed community leaders, meal providers, volunteers, City officials and residents who use community food services to increase access to healthy, safe food and vital social services in an indoor setting.

 

“No Philadelphian should go hungry when resources and dedicated volunteers who are willing and able to help are present,” said Mayor Nutter.  “The health, safety and dignity of individuals who utilize emergency food services has to be the key consideration as we work together to increase access to meals and services.  I look forward to the great work that the Philadelphia Food Access Collaboration will do for our most vulnerable citizens.”

 

The initial goals of the Collaborative are:

 

  • Increase the availability of meals at existing indoor meal service sites– Inventory existing indoor meal service organizations and assess their needs in order to increase the number of indoor meal options;
  • Coordinate meal schedules to eliminate gaps in service – Support the coordination of meal schedules for both indoor and outdoor servers to ensure there is adequate coverage throughout the week for individuals seeking food, and make this information widely available;
  • Identify opportunities for new space for meal service – Look for potential new space where outdoor servers can provide meals in a safe and healthy environment with indoor and outdoor space available to those being served food;
  • Connect individuals to meals and other social service resources – Work to ensure that information on resources for meals and key social services are provided at meal service sites;
  • Raise the visibility of these issues – Release an annual report on the work of the Collaborative towards advancing these goals, and the overall state of emergency food in Philadelphia; and
  • Fundraise in support of these efforts – Identify additional resources to advance the work of this group.

 

“The Food Access Collaborative is positioned to be a game-changer in Philadelphia’s ongoing quest to alleviate the trauma experienced through hunger.  By assembling proven leadership from diverse sectors and gathering a range of expertise, the Collaborative is positioned to drive our city toward new solutions to this vexing problem. This is a roll-up-your sleeves kind of group and I am proud to be a part of it,” said Bill Golderer, Co-Chair of the Philadelphia Food Access Collaborative.

 

Philadelphia Food Access Collaborative Members

 

Kevin Barr

Executive Director, St. John’s Hospice

John Barrett

Vice President, Logan Square Neighborhood Association

Adam Bruckner

Director, Philadelphia Restart

Bill Clark

President and Executive Director, Philabundance

Andre Cureton

Daytime Program Supervisor, Bethesda Project, Former Outdoor Food Consumer

Kim Fortunato, Esq.

      Director, Childhood Obesity and Hunger Program, Campbell Soup Company

Brian Jenkins

Executive Director, Chosen 300

Samantha Matlin

Special Advisor to the Commissioner for Policy Development and Research,Department of Behavioral

Health and Intellectual disAbility Services

Dick McMillen

Executive Director, Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission

Carey Morgan

Executive Director, Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger

Joe Pyle

Executive Director, Thomas Scattergood Behavioral Health Foundation

Joseph Rogers

Chief Advocacy Officer, Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania, Former Outdoor Food Consumer

Nilda Ruiz

President and CEO, Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha

Jay Spector

President and CEO, Jewish Employment and Vocational Services

Salomon Vazquez

Outdoor Food Provider, The Connect Church

 

Collaborative Co-Chairs

 

Bill Golderer, Convening Minister, Broad Street Ministry, Pastor, Arch Street Presbyterian Church

Mary Horstmann, Deputy Director, Policy Planning and Coordination, Mayor’s Office

 

The Collaborative will be adding additional members to ensure broad representation from key constituencies on this issue.

Mayor Nutter Signs Zoning Code

The first comprehensive zoning code reform in 50 years

Philadelphia, December 22, 2011 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter signed legislation that comprehensively rewrites and modernizes Philadelphia’s zoning code for the first time in fifty years. The four-year code rewrite process included 50 public meetings of the Zoning Code Commission (ZCC); two public hearings in City Council chambers; 36 community-based meetings; seven Stakeholder X-Change meetings; two public meetings to discuss why the Commission adopted, rejected, or modified a group’s proposal; interviews with 125 professional zoning code users and surveys of nearly 2,000 individuals on components of the proposed new zoning code.

The Zoning Code, which was passed by City Council unanimously, codifies the City’s development regulations and sets expectations regarding land use. In February 2007, City Council unanimously approved a resolution proposing an amendment to the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter to create the Zoning Code Commission, and providing for the submission of the amendment to the voters of Philadelphia. The measure was overwhelmingly approved by voters, with 80 percent of citizens voting in favor of reforming the City’s Zoning Code.
“I am delighted to sign this once-in-a-generation legislation that makes Philadelphia more attractive to developers, promotes growth, and brings our zoning code into the 21st century,” said Mayor Nutter. “Good planning is our best way to preserve the past and to anticipate the future. This modern code will help Philadelphia, in the years to come, to ensure healthy, sustainable development that protects our neighborhoods and grows our city.”

The new zoning code includes changes to the City’s development regulations and approval procedures such as:
• Making the zoning code more user-friendly;
• Reduced number of zoning classifications;
• Incorporation of a civic design review process; and
• Establishing the role of citizens in the zoning approval process.

In June 2008, Mayor Nutter offered his vision for planning in Philadelphia in the years to come. He returned the Philadelphia City Planning Commission as the authority for broad planning and development-related decisions, established the Design Review Advisory Board to provide guidance to the Planning Commission when evaluating aesthetics, form and community context for proposed projects, placed sustainability as a central factor in evaluating development proposals, and the directed the ZCC to complete the first comprehensive code reform in 35 years. Since then there has been much progress:
• The Planning Commission has adopted the Citywide Vision component of the Philadelphia2035 Comprehensive Plan and initiated the first two of 18 district plans;
• Greenworks Philadelphia, the City’s comprehensive sustainability plan has been released and will reach its midway review in 2012;
• The Office of Property Assessment (OPA) is currently undergoing a city-wide property reassessment process; and
• In 2010, the Planning Commission established the Citizens Planning Institute (CPI), with funding from the William Penn Foundation and Office of Housing and Community Development, to educate Philadelphia residents to become “citizen planners” in their neighborhoods and communities. Since then, 90 Philadelphians have graduated.

“Our new code will help to attract investment to Philadelphia, and will also give our communities an organized means for their thoughts, concerns and input to be considered in the planning process,” said Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger. “This transformative code will prevent many of the road blocks that currently inhibit growth and will make Philadelphia’s development and planning more coherent, consistent and predictable in the future.”

Eva Gladstein, Executive Director of the ZCC, added, “The newly reformed zoning code will be a tool that all Philadelphians can understand and use. The ZCC received tremendous and valuable feedback from citizens that drove this process and is reflected in the final code. The engagement of Philadelphians throughout this process contributed greatly to its success.”

Mayor Nutter, U.S. Senator Casey Unveil Unique Farmers Market at Frankford Transportation Center

Praise offered for collaborative effort to improve health and livability of neighborhoods.

Philadelphia, September 13, 2011 – As part of the City of Philadelphia’s continuing efforts to make neighborhoods healthier, Mayor Michael A. Nutter, U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey, SEPTA General Manager Joseph Casey and Deputy Mayor Donald F. Schwarz officially opened a new farmers’ market at the Frankford Transportation Center in Northeast Philadelphia.

The farmers’ market at the Frankford Transportation Center represents a collaborative effort between the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, the Food Trust, the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities, and SEPTA to increase the accessibility to healthy food options to low-income Philadelphians. It is one of 10 new farmers’ markets to open in the past 16 months under Get Healthy Philly, a federally-funded initiative to prevent obesity and make it easier for people to engage in healthy behaviors.

“The City of Philadelphia is committed to finding innovative ways to encourage people to be proactive about their health,” said Mayor Nutter. “The Frankford Transportation Farmers’ Market combines access to healthy options with sustainable food systems, local economic growth and transit-oriented development. Making healthy and affordable food more readily available to all Philadelphians is a goal of the Greenworks plan.”

SEPTA now hosts two Get Healthy Philly farmers’markets with another located at the Olney Transportation Center in North Philadelphia.

“The Frankford Farmers Market represents an innovative way to promote Pennsylvania agriculture, stimulate the local economy, create jobs and improve access to fresh, healthy foods for the community,” said Senator Casey. “Through programs like Get Healthy Philly we can continue Pennsylvania’s proud agriculture tradition to support jobs and health throughout the state.”

The 25 Get Healthy Philly farmers’ markets across the city are made accessible for low-income residents through the Philly Food Bucks program. For every $5 of SNAP (food stamp) benefits that are spent at participating markets, individuals can receive an additional $2 of free fruits and vegetables. Through Philly Food Bucks, SNAP redemption has more than doubled at farmers’ markets across the city.

“As the region’s primary provider of transit services, SEPTA recognizes the substantial role we play in connecting people to life’s necessities,” said General Manager Joe Casey. “Improving access to fresh local foods at our stations is one of the social goals outlined in SEPTA’s Sustainability Plan.”

Deputy Mayor and Health Commissioner Dr. Donald Schwarz said, “Too many people in this city and across the country live in communities that make it difficult to be healthy. In Philadelphia, this market is part of the solution.”

For more information about Get Healthy Philly, visit: http://www.foodfitphilly.org or http://www.phila.gov/health/Commissioner/CPPW.html.