Increasing Local Food Access

By PSU EcoMerge Capstone - 3:25 PM

As many of you are aware, child obesity is an increasing epidemic here in the United States. Studies have noted that one way to help curb issues of child obesity is to eat local and healthy food. After these studies conducted by the "Let's Move!" initiative In 2010, the "KnowYour Farmer, Know Your Food" Initiative run by the USDA was called upon to help local communities grow their own food, gain access to local foods, and create jobs.  From there, many great things have spawned to help communities to gain access to local food!



The"Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass" webspace spawned from these acts, creating tools from which anyone with access to a computer can gain information about what local foods are, and how to gain access to them. It's chalk full of case studies, photos, and videos that help people understand local foods and why they are important, as well as helping give access to acquiring said foods.

"Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass" provides a relatively recent map of locations from which you can find local food and markets. According to the website, they provide "[data that] includes USDA and other federally supported local food projects, farmers markets, food hubs, meat processors and more." It's full searchable and shows where someone may be able to gain access to local foods and start eating locally and healthy.

There is a long way to go for affordable and readily available access to local foods in every community, but we must start somewhere. Providing information and educating people on where to get local food is a first step, but we need to be able to make this information accessible to these people. The resources are there but they still need to be informed!

If you are interested in learning more about this, read more here

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