Local food, for real
In this series we forgo the preaching and cut off debate about what kind of food system we want and simply look for pragmatic steps forward to improve food in your neighborhood. We’re looking at ideas with proven merit, and talking with people in the trenches to understand the barriers that keep good ideas from moving forward. Without glorifying or promoting, we hope to provide a guide for anyone who wants to improve their own regional food system.
Stories in this series:
Farming has been "a rip-off system ever since day one," says California's Tom Willey -- and if we're going to improve that system, we'd better understand what makes it tick.
High-quality local ingredients can spruce up cafeteria offerings, but they require some careful bargaining and accounting, too.
Start anywhere, follow it everywhere: That's the key to building sustainable local food systems, according to one expert veteran.
Maybe it's contradictory to mix conservation and conventional farming. Or maybe you end up with the agricultural equivalent of a Prius.
Delivering healthy food to underserved urban communities takes more than just good intentions and fresh veggies. It also needs hard work and smarts.
Reducing the astonishing amount of waste built into our food system will demand innovation, care, and maybe even higher prices.
It's clear that the craze for the urban farm is no answer to feeding our teeming cities. Its value lies instead in how it can change us.
If we want to scale up the local food movement's ideas, here's a list of principles that could make all the difference.