A food system that regenerates natural resources, the resilience of all plants and animals, and communities throughout Southern Idaho.
A Regenerative and Nourishing Food Future for Southern Idaho
In late 2019, the Rockefeller Foundation and OpenIDEO announced a prize platform for compelling and progressive visions of the world’s system by 2050. We took this opportunity to create a shared, regional vision for Southern Idaho focused around the regeneration of natural resources, environmental, economic and cultural diversity, and resilient communities.
Creating a resilient, regionalized food system will uplift rural communities throughout Idaho, while providing quality jobs and biodiverse nutrient-dense food to all residents and visitors alike. Expanding our region to include Boise, Idaho Falls, and Twin Falls metro areas ensures robust market opportunities while connecting urban dwellers to natural landscapes, food production, and vibrant ecosystems. Our vision requires the deepening of trust and connection throughout our communities, and offers a space for the rematriation of nature, people, and culture throughout the landscape.
Our goal at the Sun Valley Institute is to create an enduring quality of place. It’s through our partnerships that we rapidly progress towards our food system vision for 2050: a system in which agriculture and nature exist in harmony with each other; a system in which smart policy and strategic technology investments create new opportunities for local farmers; and a system in which economy and culture connect with, and benefit from, all aspects of the community in which they exist.
The resilience of Southern Idaho depends on us regenerating our natural resources. In 2050, all food producers will have integrated regenerative practices which enabled southern Idaho’s struggling watersheds to fully regenerate for the first time in decades, benefiting everyone in the community. Energy and agriculture production exist symbiotically alongside the surrounding natural environment. Markets for ecosystem services provide additional revenue streams for land stewards. Regional farmers work hand in hand with policy makers and community leaders to ensure policies at the federal, state, & local levels uplift diversified farm operations.
All residents and visitors alike will share the incredible bounty that southern Idaho has to offer. Regionally grown foods will be accessible at all price points, at community spaces such as restaurants, retail stores, and events. Widespread education initiatives will enable everyone to understand the importance of sourcing, cooking and eating regionally grown, whole foods. As local farms and businesses diversify their revenue streams, the communities become more resilient. The revitalization of regional rural economies will not only bring economic stability to businesses, but also reduce unemployment and poverty rates, and improve overall quality of life and place to the communities throughout our region.