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Food System Policies

People looking at fruit in back of truck

Many Denver residents, especially children, have limited access to healthy, affordable foods and beverages. Limited access to nutritious food can result in poor health.

Creating healthy communities is not just about changing individual behaviors, it is also about changing the environments in which people live, work, learn and play.

Denver and its partners are working to create a common agenda and a unified food system vision. By implementing broad, coordinated and evidence-based strategies across the food system, Denver has an opportunity to achieve the City’s health, economic and environmental sustainability goals. We have an opportunity to change the community’s food environments so all Denver residents can attain the health and wellbeing they deserve.

Denver’s 2015 report is an overview of the activities by multiple City and County of Denver agencies to address some aspect of the food system – from production, distribution and retail to consumption and composting.

The report helps identify and prioritize food policy options that offer the greatest potential to impact population health, as well as build on the successes of other programs.   new and existing food system policy options for the City and its partners to inform decision-making about how to reach health, economic and environmental sustainability goals.

The ordinance allows Denver residents living in residential zone districts to sell from their homes fresh produce they have grown themselves, and cottage foods, such as jams and honey, they grow and make themselves.

View a guide to residential sales in English and En Espanol


The Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council is a citizen-driven food policy council that is appointed by the Mayor. It works to:

  • Educate, raise awareness and build support for the local food system
  • Advise the City on laws, policies, and programs related to food
  • Promote food security
  • Foster a sustainable food system.

In October 2017, the City and County of Denver released the final Denver Food Vision 2030. The vision is based on the Denver Food Baseline Report and Denver Food System Metrics and significant stakeholder engagement.

For more information on Denver's food system, see the Denver Food System Map or email comments and questions to

Food Vision 2030 Resumen Ejecutivo en español.

Stretch your family's food dollars and get more fruits and vegetables with Double Up Food Bucks.

Apply for food assistance through Denver Human Services

Find Denver Farmers' Markets that accept SNAP (Food Stamps/EBT). 

Locate a pickup spot for Community Supported Agriculture.


The Healthy Beverage Partnership (HBP) is a regional collaborative effort that facilitates the development of healthy food and beverage policy and environmental changes in a wide variety of community settings in the Metro Denver area. 

The HBP is made up of six public health agencies: Boulder County Public Health, City and County of Broomfield Public Health and Environment, the City and County of Denver Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver Public Health, Jefferson County Public Health and Tri-County Health Department and is sponsored by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment through the Cancer, Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Disease (CCPD) Grants Program.

The Denver Department of Public Health and Environment can provide the following services to assist you and your organization in developing healthier food and beverage policies and practices:

  1. Conducting baseline assessments of food and beverage environments and policies
  2. Providing technical assistance in the creation and adoption of healthy food and beverage policies and practices
    1. Healthy Meeting
    2. Healthier Vending
    3. Healthier Concessions and Cafeterias
  3. Implementing educational and public information campaigns, including the the Hidden Sugar Campaign Toolkit.

Executive Order No. 70 – Healthier City Vending Machines – was signed May 25, 2018, by Mayor Michael B. Hancock, establishing a policy to provide healthier food and beverage options in City vending machines.

For more information contact: Mondi Mason 720-865-5463

The Food Action Plan is a set of strategic projects to increase food equity in the city. The plan serves as an action-oriented companion piece to the Denver Food Vision, an aspirational view of advancing our food system in Denver.

The Food Action Plan is fulfilled through a series of projects. Our first highlighted project is Food Matters, a collaborative effort with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), funded by The Rockefeller Foundation, to reduce the amount of food being wasted in Denver homes and businesses.