Local Food Action Plan - icon only

Local Food Team

Cheryl Graffagnino
Local Food Systems Strategies Coordinator
Columbus Public Health
Jalisa Dawkins
Local Food Systems Strategies Manager
Columbus Public Health
Brian Estabrook
Food Systems Planner
Franklin County Economic Development & Planning Department

Media Contacts Tyler Lowry
Franklin County Board of Commissioners

Planning Process

The development of the Columbus & Franklin County Local Food Action Plan was jointly led by Franklin County Economic Development and Planning, Columbus Public Health and Local Matters. Employees of each of these agencies were responsible for coordinating and communicating the activities of the planning process. This unique partnership between health, economic development, and the nonprofit sector has led to impactful strategies that will have long-term outcomes. 

The Columbus & Franklin County Local Food Action Plan focuses on the following issues:

  • Enhancing communication and coordination among existing food resources and agencies
  • Improving access to and education about healthy food, affordable food and local food
  • Increasing the role of food in economic development
  • Preventing food related waste


Strengthening the local food system will improve community health, the economy and the environment

  • A stronger local food system will ensure more residents have access to healthy, affordable food.
  • Strengthening the local food system will create and support jobs.
  • Increasing local food production can reduce our dependence on food from other regions.
  • A more efficient food system uses less energy and reduces waste.

The Columbus & Franklin County Local Food Action Plan helps to establish priorities for city and county funding initiatives. The plan will also better position the City, County and community organizations for future grant opportunities.


The Public: Residents, Producers, Processors, Distributors, Commercial and Institutional Buyers were engaged through surveys, neighborhood–based food planning processes and public comment periods throughout the planning process. 

Community Stakeholders: Area Commissions, Health Coalitions and Committees, Economic Development and Planning professionals, township, village and city governments, local chambers of commerce and professional and industry associations were provided with regular updates throughout the planning process. Current conditions and recommended policies and actions were shared with these and other groups representing the Community.  

The Working Committee:  A Working Committee helped guide a broad, community-focused planning process to develop the Columbus & Franklin County Local Food Action Plan. These individuals met regularly throughout the planning process to provide further input on the deliverables produced by the Project Team

Working Committee members shared their expertise in varied facets of the local food system to inform:

    • A vision for the Local Food Action Plan
    • Identification of policy and programmatic targets for the Local Food Action Plan
    • Development of action steps to achieve our vision
    • Preparation of the Local Food Action Plan and supporting documents