In 2018, LFA engaged a renowned food system analyst to develop a Community Food System Strategic Plan for the Wood River Valley region.
Food System Strategic Plan
In 2018, Blaine County Food Council was awarded a Western Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE) grant to bring 20-year food system analyst Ken Meter, president and founder of Crossroads Resource Center in Lansing, Minn., to our valley. At our May workshop, Ken engaged more than 40 local food system stakeholders - farmers, advocates, community leaders, economic analysts, and non-profit leaders - to create an overview of our food supply chain and brainstorm solutions.
After reviewing Blaine County metrics, Ken reported encouraging economic impacts that an increase in local food production would have on our community. For example, if each household spent $5 per week on Idaho farm products, our local farmers would earn upward of $56 million dollars each year! LFA helped coordinate this workshop to launch a more comprehensive project - the development of a Community Food System Strategic Plan,
Through a collaborative process involving key food system stakeholders, LFA is now working with Ken to conduct an in-depth study of our regional food shed. Based on data collected, he will recommend feasible solutions to improve food production, processing, storage and distribution to better supply local schools, hospitals, organizations and the public and strengthen our regional food economy. In 2019, we are excited to act on his recommendations.