In Favor of Farm to Fork: An Assessment of the Local Food System in Metropolitan Atlanta
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Addressing the issues and complexities of the food system at large and local food systems specifically requires an inherently comprehensive point of view and approach. As such, decision makers interested in supporting and promoting local food systems must first understand the fundamental supply chain relationships between food production, market demands, and supporting infrastructure in order to develop effective policies, plans, and programs. Unfortunately, readily available information related to food systems in a localized context is often limited and disjointed. These gaps in information make it particularly difficult for planners and policymakers to both qualify and quantify the existing conditions of a local food system and establish meaningful and measurable future goals. Thus, the objective of this research is to identify these information gaps and to assess the local food system in Metropolitan Atlanta region, and to determine the viability of establishing a more robust local food system in the metropolitan region of Atlanta. This report focuses on the conditions and characteristics of supply chain relationships in the regionﾒs local food system and explores the regionﾒs existing agricultural capacity, logistical support, and market dynamics that are shaping its future. Based on these observations, barriers and opportunities to expanding the regionﾒs local food system will be identified and strategic recommendations for decision makers made.