Win a copy of Permaculture Design Companion this week in the Permaculture Design forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • Anne Miller
  • paul wheaton
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Mike Jay Haasl
  • Burra Maluca
garden masters:
  • James Freyr
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
  • Carla Burke
  • Dave Burton
  • Pearl Sutton

What Does a Food System Mean to You?

Posts: 4329
Location: Missoula, MT US Hardy:5a Annual Precipitation: 15" Wind:4.2mph Temperature:18-87F
transportation forest garden tiny house books urban greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I adore how Grocery Story begins the book by defining what they are talking about- food systems. In particular, they will be talking about food co-ops, but before the book gets into that, it starts with the larger concept of a food system.

In the book, a food system is defined as:

Jon Steinman wrote:The processes and infrastructure involved in feeding a population: growing, harvesting, processing, packaging, transporting, marketing, consumption and disposal of food. It also includes the inputs needed and outputs generated at each of these steps. A food system operates within and is influenced by social, political, economic and environmental contexts. It also requires human resources that provide labor, research and education.

For some people, a food system might look like the industrial food system might look like this sequence from the movie Samsara:

The food sequence shows industrially raised animals and industrially processed food.

For others, a food system might look like a farm to table dinner, like they have at the Root Bottom Farm:

"n 2016 we sold most of our belongings and left the city in southern California to start a small homestead in the mountains of North Carolina. We left the city in search for a more minimal and intentional life. We became passionate about growing our own food and knowing what exactly is in our food after I (Jason) became diagnosed with cancer. Now 8 years in remission we as a family are on a journey to live our passions."

However, for some a food system might look more like food co-op- for example, the Orcas Food Co-op:

"The Orcas Food Co-op is a member-owned cooperative that focuses on providing high quality local and organic, non-gmo food as well as other goods and services that benefit the community. Anyone can shop at the co-op and everyone is welcome. Co-op members are financially invested in the Co-op and share equal ownership with other members. In return, members receive special benefits such as 10% off one shop of their choice every month, 5% off bulk department items every day, discounts on case special orders, and eligibility for patronage dividends as the co-op matures. "

Though, even further still, for some a food system might just be as magnificent as this forest garden Martin Crawford made:

"Instead of neat rows of monoculture, forest gardens combine fruit and nut trees, shrubs, herbs, vines and perennial vegetables together in one seemingly wild setting. This type of agroforestry mimics natural ecosystems and uses the space available in a sustainable way. UK-based Martin Crawford is one of the pioneers of forest gardening. Starting out with a flat field in 1994, his land has been transformed into a woodland and serves as an educational resource for others interested in forest gardening. This short film by Thomas Regnault focuses on Crawford's forest garden, which is abundant, diverse, edible, and might be one answer to the future of food systems."

Some of Martin Crawford's work and related works can be seen at The Agroforestry Research Trust.

So, what does a food system mean to you?
Posts: 1558
Location: Big Island, Hawaii (2300' elevation, 60" avg. annual rainfall, temp range 55-80 degrees F)
forest garden rabbit tiny house books solar woodworking
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What does a food system mean to me personally? Basically it is my homestead farm and local community. I could eat entirely off my farm, but I enjoy the variety that trading within my community provides. Yeah, we "cheat" on Saturdays when we socialize with friends over a restaurant meal.
Posts: 8
Location: Nelson, British Columbia, Canada
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Looking forward to engaging with you all August 19-23 to discuss my new book: Grocery Story - The Promise of Food Co-ops in the Age of Grocery Giants. Thanks for bringing attention to this important topic. :)
No holds barred. And no bars holed. Except this tiny ad:
Heat your home with the twigs that naturally fall of the trees in your yard
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!