Sustainability in our Local Food System

Diversity in our Local Food System

Nourish your body, and nourish our place. You can feel good about eating food that has been locally grown, caught, raised, and made because our producers share the same communities and landscapes and take pride in the fact that they are being good stewards of our land and resources. These icons help you recognize businesses that take care of employees, our environment, AND the local economy.

Sustainability Indicators

Sustainable Connections Members
Our members are independent, locally owned businesses, farms, organizations, and community leaders who are committed to this region, its quality of life, and a thriving local economy. Learn more about membership here.

Eat Local First Participant
These businesses are committed to sourcing more of their food from local farmers and food producers. Learn more here

Certified Organic
A third-party certification identifying products free of chemical pesticides & fertilizers, hormones, and preventative antibiotics.

Salmon Safe Certified
Third-party certification indicates farms with agricultural practices that protect water quality, salmon habitat,
and native biodiversity.

Whatcom Farmers for Clean Water
A third-party certification by Whatcom Conservation District recognizing farms with agricultural practices that protect clean water.

Toward Zero Waste
Over 400 businesses have reduced their waste and increased rates of recycling and the purchasing of recycled and environmentally preferable products with this innovative Sustainable Connections campaign.

Energy Efficient Business
These businesses are taking the lead to reduce energy consumption through more efficient lighting, heating, solar, and alternative power sources. Many are participants in the Community Energy Challenge through Sustainable Connections.

Accepts EBT / Food Stamps
These businesses are actively participating in anti-hunger campaigns to create a food-secure community.

Protected Farmland
This farm is protected in perpetuity through an agricultural conservation easement that was secured through Whatcom County’s Purchase of Development Rights Program. Learn more here.

Sustainable Seafood
These businesses hold themselves to the highest standards and go to great lengths to manage their fisheries with best practices for catching/farming with minimal impact on marine habitats and other wildlife. They have been rated “Best Choice” by Monterey Bay’s Seafood Watch program.

Diversity builds economic vitality, uplifts communities, and promotes productivity and resilience. We believe communities thrive with the inclusion of all people and want to bring visibility to business owners who enrich our community. The icons below celebrate business owners who have self-selected for their business to be recognized in the following ways:

Diversity Indicators

Physical and / or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

LGBTQ Owned Business Indicator

Sexual orientations, gender expressions, and gender identities of the LGBTQ community.

Minority Owned Business

Racial and/or ethnic groups other than white, which is Washington State’s demographic majority.

Indigenous Owned business

Indigenous peoples of the continental United States, Alaska, and Hawai‘i.

Veteran-owned business

Active service completed in any branch of the United States Armed

Woman-owned business

Owned & operated by a woman.

You will find these indicators on our Food Atlas profiles, and in many of our printed publications.

Thank You to Our Eat Local First Sponsors & Partners

Bellingham Farmers Market

Thank You to Our Food & Farming Sponsors

Mt. Baker Care Center logo