Community planning is starting to include a broader food systems focus, spanning topics such as nutrition and health outcomes, sustainable farming practices, economic and social implications of local food production, distribution, and consumption. Together, these issues are a driving force for the passions of those seeking positive change in their communities through healthy food. The purpose of this book is to explore how and where local food and farms, as part of a local or regional food system, can positively impact both economic development and overall well-being of communities. Across North America, there are good examples of the ways in which innovative local food systems provide opportunities for: increasing job growth and entrepreneurship; retaining local farmers on their land while nourishing their community; and providing communities places to congregate, bond, and become closer-knit. Six such examples are highlighted, each illustrating a novel model offering unique contributions to community economic health and well-being. These important cases offer practitioners, advocates, academics, and students insight into how applications can be built or studied in their own communities.
Table of Contents
1. On Solid Ground? Foundations and Concepts of Food Systems and Community Development 2. Farmer and Community Livelihoods 3. Access to Local Foods 4. Food-based Entrepreneurship—with Sarah Waring 5. Fostering Community with Farmers Markets—Richard McCarthy 6. Food Hubs: A New Opportunity for Local Food Systems 7. Cooperating for Community Development—with Lauren Parker 8. Considerations and Ideas for Growing the Future of Local Food Systems and Community Development
Rhonda Phillips is the author/editor of eighteen books on community development and related topics. She offers both practice and academic perspectives on the ever-changing topic of community revitalization and is a certified planner (American Institute of Certified Planners). She is a professor in the agricultural economics department and Dean of the Honors College at Purdue University, and was formerly with Arizona State University’s School of Community Resources and Development and Global Institute of Sustainability.
Christopher Wharton is an associate professor of Nutrition at Arizona State University (ASU). He directs ASU’s Food Systems Transformation Initiative, focused on building more equitable, diverse, and resilient food systems, and is co-founder of Chow Locally, LLC, a Phoenix-based food hub supporting local farms and healthy food access.