Community food systems resilience: Values, benefits, and indicators
Keywords:Local Food Policy, Resilience, Equity, Indicators, Sustainability, Community Health, Food Justice, Values, Regional Economics, Local Government
There is increasing awareness that community food policies and programs can address issues of equity, sustainability, profitability, and resilience in food systems. Community coalitions, local governments, food policy councils, cooperative extension, and other stakeholders seek to improve community food systems through policy and programmatic development. However, these groups often do not know what types of policy or program models exist to help achieve their goals. This research identified expert consensus on three important topics related to community food systems resilience: (1) values that should guide adopting and implementing policies and programs to facilitate community food systems resilience, (2) benefits of adopting policies and programs that support community food systems resilience, and (3) policies, programs, and initiatives that are indicators of resilience. These indicators can be used to assess the resilience of communities and to help communities identify policy options to achieve specific goals and objectives. The results of this study were used to create a community food system resilience audit tool that community groups can use to assess the current resiliency of their food system, identify priorities, and set goals. The audit tool focuses on seven core themes that contribute to community food systems resilience: agricultural and ecological sustainability, community health, community self-reliance, distributive and democratic leadership, focus on the farmer and food maker, food justice, and place-based economics. The individual indicators in this audit tool provide specific policies and practices that can be adopted by local governments, supported by cooperative extension agents, and advocated for by food policy councils and community-based organizations.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Catherine G. Campbell, Alicia Papanek, Alia DeLong, John Diaz, Cody Gusto, Debra Tropp
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