Healthy Food, Healthy City


I had the opportunity to write recently about the Sustainable Food Center and all the exciting changes going on there. As Brenda Thompson, an out board member of SFC pointed out, there’s probably never been a time in Austin’s history when food has been such a huge focus.

“I was just in Paris, and people were talking about food trailers in Austin,” Thompson said when I interviewed her earlier this year. “We’re known for food now, and the whole local food movement…When I first heard about SFC 20 years ago, I had no idea what they do. Now, the farmer’s markets have just exploded – they’ve helped create this whole local food system.”

SFC is a big part of that, which is one reason it’s so exciting to see the center getting a new home. SFC is close to wrapping up its $4.5 million capital campaign, which began in 2010 and is 80 percent to the $4.5 million mark. That money will help build a new center in East Austin, close to the Capital MetroRail MLK station. Here’s a glance at some of the new center’s features:

-More than 7,000 square feet for meeting space, classes and workshops

-Walk-in pantry for food storage

-Community garden, outdoor learning pavilion and greenhouse

-3 star rating by Austin Energy Green Building

Also impressive is the help that the local foodie community has pitched in toward the new center. Austin chefs, restaurants and food and beverage industry movers and shakers dubbed “The Breadwinners” have been helping raise funds for the new center. It’s not too late to pitch in your contribution as well to help SFC make it to the finish line!




A native New Englander, Kate moved to Austin in 2002 to attend graduate school at the University of Texas at Austin, where she got her master’s degree in journalism. She spent several years as a reporter with the Austin Business Journal, where she covered health care, development and real estate. Kate now runs Thumbtack Communications, where she provides ghostwriting, copywriting, social media strategy and PR in addition to writing bylined articles. She lives in Central Austin with her husband, son, and two cranky cats. When she’s not writing, she’s playing guitar, gardening or hiking.