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Examining the Local Food System: Community Food Assessments ... Goal: To identify opportunities and impacts of increasing local food production for local/regional consumption ...

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Presentation Transcript

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Instructors Resources, Actions

  • Jeff S. Sharp, Associate Professor of Rural Sociology

  • Molly Bean Smith, Research Associate, Social Responsibility Initiative

  • Jill Clark, Director, Center for Farmland Policy Innovation

  • Shoshanah Inwood, Research Associate, Social Responsibility Initiative



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Tools to Examine the Local Food System Resources, Actions

  • Goal:

    • Provide an overview of practices/approaches practitioners and communities are undertaking to learn more about the local food system

    • Provide a listing of resources on practices/approaches to learning more about the local food system


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Examining the Local Food System: Focus on Two Tools Resources, Actions

  • Community Food Assessments

  • Surveying Key Actors in the Food System

    • Consumers

    • Producers

    • Intermediaries – Retailer, Distributors, Restauranteurs, and Institutions


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Examining the Local Food System Resources, Actions

Community Food Assessments


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Examining the Local Food System: Community Food Assessments Resources, Actions

  • Community Food Assessments

    • “A Community Food Assessment (CFA) is a powerful way to tell the story of what is happening with food in a community, and to mobilize efforts to improve the food system. Through such assessments, diverse stakeholders work together to research their local food system, publicize their findings, and implement changes based on their findings.” (CFSC Website)


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Community Food Assessments Are… Resources, Actions

  • Processes aimed at facilitating decision-making

  • Aimed at Achieving Outcomes

Missoula County Community Food Assessment (MCCFA)


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Community Food Assessments Resources, Actions

  • Answer questions such as:

    • How does my community satisfy households’ food needs?

    • Where are my community’s food production resources?

    • What is agriculture’s economic contribution to my community?

    • What are the marketing and distribution channels used by producers in my community?

    • What are the assets and barriers to creating a more viable and sustainable production system?


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Community Food Assessments Resources, Actions

  • Who conducts a community food assessment?

    • Food Policy Councils/Coalitions

    • Community Organizations

    • Public Agencies

    • Extension Teams

    • Class Collaborative Projects – College Students

    • Private firms/consultants


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Community Food Assessments Resources, Actions

  • Methods and Approaches

    • Diverse, but typically include:

      • Secondary Data/Document Compilation and Analysis

        • Institutional/Organizational Data

          • Departments of Education

        • Census of Agriculture

          • http://www.agcensus.usda.gov

        • U.S. Census Data on Population

          • http://www.census.gov/index.html


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  • Primary Data Collection Efforts Resources, Actions

    • Qualitative - Interviews and/or Focus Groups

      • Key informants/community representatives

      • People at risk of experiencing food insecurity

      • Consumers – food shopping patterns

      • Food producers

      • Others involved in the local food system


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Community Food Assessments Resources, Actions

  • Quantitative

    • Surveys – Producers, Consumers, Retailers, Institutions

      • Producers - Where sell products, what grow, what is preventing from growing different products, what would help to grow more locally, etc.

      • Consumers – Where food is purchased, barriers to purchasing, how far travel to get foods, proportion of food purchased locally, occurrence of gardening, economic adjustments, etc.

      • Retailers/Institutions – Procurement of local foods, barriers to purchasing, demand for local, market basket inventories

    • Mapping/Inventories – Healthy Food Access


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CFA Mapping: Focus on Healthy Food Access Resources, Actions

  • What is Healthy Food Access?

    • Shifted from hunger abatement to healthy food access

      • Access is multifaceted

      • Access must recognize cultural differences

  • What exacerbates problems related to healthy food access

    • Urban sprawl

    • Spatial mismatch in transportation

    • Lack of competition between outlets

    • Unhealthy foods are often cheaper (perceived or real)


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Healthy Food Access - Assessment Resources, Actions

  • Identifying areas in need - Food Access Gaps

    • Physical

    • Economic

    • Healthy

    • http://cffpi.osu.edu/fooddeserts.htm

  • Urban versus rural considerations



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Ohio Food Policy Council – Healthy Food Access Task Force Supermarket Access (in green)

  • Mission = Provide those in need with greater access to fresh and nutritious foods.

  • Goals

    • Identify rural and urban food deserts in Ohio by Dec. 31, 2009, and decrease these areas by 10 percent by providing access to healthy, local foods by 2015.

    • Increase the number of schools using the national farm to school program by a minimum of 50 schools by 2015.

  • List of specific recommendations and progress made

    • Such as farm markets and federal assistance program


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Our Team’s CFA Approach - Evaluating Knox County’s Food System: Opportunities to Grow

  • One of a handful of Community Food Assessments conducted in Ohio

    • Partners: Social Responsibility Initiative, Center for Farmland Policy Innovation, Kenyon College’s Rural Life Center, and Knox County Extension

    • Goal: To identify opportunities and impacts of increasing local food production for local/regional consumption

    • Unique: Adapted community and economic development tools to understand the food and farming system


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Knox County Methods System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Examined Agricultural Statistics to Characterize Knox County Agriculture

    • Ag Sales, Farm Sales, Sales Direct to Consumers, Farm Size, Off-farm employment

  • Situated Knox County in the Region – Mapping

  • Examined Commuting Patterns

  • Conducted a Food Retail Market Analysis

  • Estimated the Economic Effect of 3 Development Scenarios*

  • Conducted interviews with Intermediaries to assess barriers and opportunities for increasing purchasing of local foods


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Community Food Assessments System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Outcomes

    • Awareness and Greater Visibility of Food System Issues

    • Establishment of Baselines for future monitoring

    • Documentation, Guides, Directories

    • Establishment of Food Policy Councils

    • Establishment of other formalized collaborations/partnerships

    • Policy Recommendations

    • Action Plans


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Community Food Assessments: Pitfalls System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Skilled leader / facilitator to guide the assessment

  • Before undertaking – should think about why an assessment should be done and how findings will be used

    • Should know up front what questions you want to answer

  • Resources to conduct and complete costly

    • Time & Labor


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Community Food Assessment Resources System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Community Food Security Coalition’s Community Food Assessment Guidebook,

    http://www.foodsecurity.org/cfa_guidebook.html

  • Planting the Seeds of Sustainable Economic Development: Knox County’s Local Food System. Social Responsibility Initiative Topical Report 09-04. August 2009.

    http://sri.osu.edu/pdf/Knox_County_Assessment_Summary-200908.pdf

  • USDA’s Community Food Security Assessment Toolkit

    http://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/efan02013/


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Examining the Local Food System System: Opportunities to Grow

Primary Data Collection


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Examining the Local Food System: Primary Data Collection System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Consumer Survey Research

    • Goal: To better understand the market for local foods

    • Samples:

      • Statewide

        • Ohio Survey

      • Select subpopulations

        • CSA members

        • Food cooperative members

        • Farmers’ market shoppers


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Consumer Research System: Opportunities to Grow

Can Usually Find a Place to Park


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Examining the Local Food System: Producer Research System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Goal: To understand existing production and development opportunities

Have some direct sales to consumers by type of farmer (% yes)


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Examining the Local Food System: Intermediary Research System: Opportunities to Grow

  • Goal: To better understand opportunities and barriers to expanding the production and consumption of local foods

  • Examples of Intermediaries: Retailers, Restauranteurs, and Distributors


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Survey Research Resources System: Opportunities to Grow

  • USDA’s Community Food Security Assessment Toolkit

    http://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/efan02013/

  • University and Extension Professionals

  • Dillman, D. 2000. Mail and Internet Surveys: The Tailored Design Method. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


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Thank You. System: Opportunities to Grow


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