LEWISTON — Mayor Robert Macdonald of Lewiston and Mayor Jonathan LaBonte of Auburn have issued proclamations declaring Friday, Oct. 24, as Food Day in the Twin Cities.

The aim is to call attention to local activities and resources aimed at improving access to good food and good health.

Food Day is celebrated across the country to support policies that advance healthier diets, promote sustainable and organic agriculture, reduce hunger, reform factory farms and support fair working conditions for food and farm workers.

In a written statement released Thursday, Deb Burd, chairwoman of the Good Food Council of Lewiston-Auburn, said, “With Food Day, we can celebrate our food system when it works and fix it when it’s broken.”

Organized in the summer of 2012, the Good Food Council of L-A is made up of representatives from a variety of sectors and hopes to facilitate food system solutions that will result in long-term change. The council spearheaded a Community Food Assessment for Lewiston-Auburn that was completed in 2013.

The CFA is the first report of its kind in Maine and provides a detailed look at the L-A food system. Some of the CFA’s findings include:

* Lack of access to good food because of geographic isolation, often due to a lack of, or limits to, transportation;

* Lack of affordable food and limited choices for people using downtown stores;

* Cultural obstacles for obtaining appropriate food;

* Limited efficacy of government programs designed to provide healthy food;

* Lack of connectivity and collaboration between organizations working toward similar goals; and

* Lack of education about food preparation and selection, affecting healthy eating habits.

The Community Food Assessment and an executive summary of the report are available at www.goodfood4la.org. For more information about National Food Day, go to www.foodday.org.

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