Salem Community Food Assessment Published

Presentation of findings and recommendations July 16, 7:00 p.m., City Hall Annex, 98 Washington Street

Mayor Kim Driscoll and Mass in Motion Salem are pleased to announce the publication of the Salem Community Food Assessment. Salem Mass in Motion will present the findings of the assessment in a special public meeting scheduled for Monday, July 16th at 7pm in the large first floor meeting room at City Hall Annex, 98 Washington Street.

Compiled by Mass in Motion Salem and the Salem Food Policy Council over the course of a year, the goal of the assessment was to evaluate and identify opportunities for improvements in Salem’s food system, specifically in the areas of food insecurity, food access, community agriculture, and food waste.

The objectives of the assessment included:

  • Identifying how and where Salem residents access food
  • Identifying barriers to accessing nutritious, affordable foods at both the city and neighborhood level
  • Assessing community resources in place that improve food access
  • Describing residents’ satisfaction with food available in their neighborhood
  • Gauging residents’ awareness of the relationship between diet and health

Recommendations have been made in each of the four areas assessed. The Salem Food Policy Council will begin working on an action plan to implement these recommendations and make policy recommendations that will reduce barriers to healthy foods and ensure an equitable food system for all Salem residents.

“I would like to thank our Mass in Motion Coordinators, Russell Findley and Kerry Murphy, for leading this important initiative, and all the volunteer members of the Food Policy Council,” said Mayor Driscoll. The goal of the Food Policy Council and this Assessment is to help us ensure that all Salem residents have access to safe, healthy, and affordable food options. Through the objective assessment of weaknesses and assets in our existing food systems, the Council has been thoughtful about how we can make positive changes where they will be most impactful. Having this study complete and the forthcoming action plan will lead to improved program development and coordination around food issues in our community, changes in public policy where necessary, a broader awareness of food security issues, the development of stronger networks and coalitions, and an increased community participation in improving Salem’s food systems.”

The assessment can be found online at:

Salem Food Policy Council:

Sara Moore, PhD — Salem State University

Kylie Sullivan — Salem Main Streets

Deborah Jeffers — Salem Public Schools Food & Nutrition Services

Patrice Toomey—Salem Public Schools Food & Nutrition Services

Patricia Zaido —Salem for All Ages

Katina Polemenako—Salvation Army

Lynda Fairbanks Atkins—Salem resident

Beth Alaimo—Root 

Matt Buchanan—Salem YMCA GreenSpace

Kate Benashki—Haven from Hunger

Kelley Annese—Jewish Family & Children’s Services

Julie Pottier-Brown—Food Direct Coop

Rachel Lutts—Tabernacle Church

Sara Woolfenden—Tabernacle Church

David Woolfenden—Tabernacle Church

Kerry Murphy—Mass in Motion

Russell Findley—Mass in Motion

About Mass in Motion Salem, a program of the Office of Mayor Kimberley Driscoll

Mass in Motion Salem, works locally to increase opportunities for Salem residents to eat better and move more in the places they live, learn, work, and play. Salem is among the over 50 cities and towns throughout the Commonwealth that are part of the MA Department of Public Health’s Mass in Motion Municipal Wellness and Leadership Program. The initiative is funded in part by North Shore Medical Center and Partners HealthCare with additional support from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.


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PDF icon final_assessment.pdf13.09 MB