Sustainable Foods

The Health System is involved with a number of sustainable food projects, mainly through the San Mateo County Food System Alliance (Food Alliance).  This coalition of farmers, fishermen, public health professionals, environmental advocates, and farmers’ market managers are interested in promoting and supporting a food system that is economically viable, environmentally sound, and socially equitable. 

A sustainable food system incorporates three key principles: economic viability, environmental stewardship and social justice.  Increasing access to sustainable food supports various San Mateo County initiatives and priorities including the Get Healthy San Mateo County Task Force and the Cool Counties Initiative, a commitment by the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors to reduce carbon emissions in San Mateo County.

The Food Alliance has three committees: a Farm to Institution Committee which is promoting a garden in every school and collaborating with schools, hospitals and other institutions to procure more locally grown produce; a Food Security Committee which is interested in exploring ways to increase the food stamp participation rate in San Mateo County, and a Land Use Committee which is addressing water shortages in the county to encourage local food production.  Key lessons learned and accomplishments to date can be found here.

The San Mateo County Food System Alliance meets the fourth Tuesday of every month. If you are interested in learning more, please visit