Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Go Rural – Local food study surveys farmers in the Midwest

KatThe Local Food Linkages Project is surveying producers in rural Missouri and Nebraska to identify opportunities for marketing food closer to home. This collaborative study between the University of Missouri Extension and the University of Nebraska will assess the potential of local/regional food systems, targeting eight Missouri counties in the northern Ozarks, five Missouri counties in the Old Trails Region, and five counties in Southeast Nebraska. For farmers and consumers in this area, check out the project details to learn how you can be involved.

According to the USDA Economic Research Service, average farm-direct sales are lower in rural areas than in urban areas. One goal of the Food Linkages Project is to determine the economic benefits of local/regional food systems in rural areas. As highlighted in Farm Aid’s Rebuilding America’s Economy with Family-Farm Centered Food Systems, local/regional food systems support economies, communities and farmers. In this report, stories from around the country demonstrate the power of local/regional spending and investing.

The Principle Investigator of the Local Food Linkages Project is Dr. Mary Hendrickson, Extension Associate Professor in the University of Missouri Department of Rural Sociology and Director of University of Missouri Extension’s Food Circles Networking Project. Mary was featured as Farm Aid’s Farmer Hero in January 2010 for her critical work highlighting corporate concentration and market abuses in the agricultural sector.

For more information about how the University of Missouri Extension is working to develop local food systems in rural areas, see the full story.

Posted by Kat.

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