DENVER (CBS4) – Denver’s Department of Public Health and Environment teamed up with Colorado State University for a food summit on Tuesday. Hundreds learned about the importance of buying local food.

(credit: CBS)

Those who attended got to try locally grown food and learn how buying local helps the economy.

City officials say public institutions spend about $120 billion on food purchases and can start the change by “reducing energy and water consumption, mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and promoting sustainable farming practices.”

“We’re having this conversation today to try and figure out how we can do a better job supporting Colorado farmers and also making sure we’re making more sustainable and better choices to support farmers and producers here,” said Laine Cidlowski, a spokeswoman for the City and County of Denver.

(credit: CBS)

The summit works to connect and meet urban food goals while also helping rural communities.

Groups using the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) learned about doubling their purchasing power when buying Colorado produce.

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