Regional Food Systems, Are They Possible?
For the most part, infrastructure exists to meet the needs of local markets across the country. Granted, processing facilities in many regions are limited, but generally speaking, are able to provide adequate service to keep producers with product to supply Farmers Markets and direct sales.
I feel there is general agreement that if more facilities were available and/or existing facilities were able to expand, more farmers and ranchers would be able to market their product on a regional (larger scale) than just locally. The big question is how can we improve the infrastructure to create viable regional opportunities?
Specifically, I would like to hear what suggestions folks have to accomplish the following three objectives mentioned by Rob Smart (@JamButter on Twitter). Incidentally, these are three objectives that I would like to see come to fruition as well.
(1) Rebuild regional food systems
(2) Increase mid-sized farm/food operations
(3) Increase convenient consumer access
What are your success stories and ideas to accomplish these objectives?