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Why Local Food Matters: Views from the National Landscape

Why Local Food Matters: Views from the National Landscape

Table of Contents
 What do we mean by local food?
 Relationship of local food to U.S. food system  Importance of local food demand
 Growth of local food marketing outlets
 Demand drivers and trends
 What does the future of local food look like?  Is there room for further growth?
 How do AMS programs facilitate market access for local food?

What is Local?
 A food product that is raised, produced, aggregated, stored, processed, and distributed in the locality or region in which the final product is marketed.
 No official national designation, though some individual USDA programs use a broad (maximum) definition:
 Less than 400 miles from the origin of the product, or  Within the State in which the product is produced.
 Includes both direct-to-consumer sales AND intermediated sales by distributors/food hubs
 To restaurants, grocery stores, schools/universities, hospitals, et. al.