As part of our goal to goal to make traditional foods and fresh, local foods available to all Yurok Tribal members, the Yurok Tribe Environmental Department (YTED) Food Sovereignty Program will purchase and distribute these foods to tribal members residing within the seven districts of the Yurok Tribe. The Yurok Indian Reservation (YIR) was declared a food desert by the USDA in 2011, with many tribal members having to drive over an hour one way to the nearest supermarket. The vast majority of Yurok Tribal members living within the YIR have reported food insecurity, as have tribal members throughout all seven districts.
Traditional foods will be the highest priority for purchase and distribution, followed by other applicable foods from indigenous producers, other BIPOC producers, and other local producers respectively. This project will purchase food from an estimated 150 producers, the majority of which being Yurok producers, and distribute approximately $600,000 worth of local food to tribal members. The local food procurement project will supplement existing nutritional support programs, such as the Title VI Elder’s Nutrition program, the Yurok Tribe FDPIR program, and the Elder’s Fishery.