Food and Society

Food Hubs and Values-Based Supply Chains

Food Hub and VBSC Resources

Wholesale channels that provide additional marketing options for small- to mid-sized, values-based producers, increase consumer access to their products, and participate in 'farm to fork' efforts are increasingly referred to as values-based supply chains (VBSCs).  Businesses within VBSCs that aggregate product from these kinds of producers are often referred to as food hubs. 

Beyond Fresh & Direct

Guides for Producers and Extension Educators

Consumers’ interest in knowing where their food comes from has contributed significantly to the recent growth of the specialty foods market.  The Beyond Fresh & Direct project team received a grant from USDA to identify ingredient sourcing opportunities in the specialty food business.

Strategies for Farmers Markets and Small Farm Marketing: Case Studies Overview

Project Overview

The number of farmers markets nationwide has increased more than ten-fold over the last few decades. Today there are more than 3,000 farmersmarkets bringing fresh, seasonal, high quality foods directly from local farms to enthusiastic customers in large and small communities throughout the U.S. Although farmersmarkets are known for connecting consumers directly with farmers, there has been little recognition of the way these markets help develop farm businesses and the economies of the host communities.

Regional Marketing Studies

Our Agriculture marketing studies examines how specific counties or regions are responding to global economic and social trends by developing strategies that support more local or regional food systems.

Kern County Food System Assessment

The Kern County Food system Assessment is the product of collaboration among a broad range of stakeholders across the food system in Kern County, including farmers, retailers, consumers, public health and social service and agriculture professionals, educators, advocates, policymakers, regulators, and more. It is intended to serve as a catalyst for collaborative learning, relationship building, and community-based policy development to strengthen Kern County’s food system.

Community food system resources

A sustainable community food system is a collaborative network that integrates sustainable food production, processing, distribution, consumption and waste management in order to enhance the environmental, economic and social health of a particular place. Farmers, consumers and communities partner to create a more locally based, self-reliant food economy.

One of the most important aspects of sustainable community food system projects is that they increase resident participation to achieve the following goals:

Agricultural Worker Time and Activity Study in Caneberries

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) contracted with the UC Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SAREP) to conduct a time and activity assessment among field workers in California’s caneberry sector. The assessment sought to answer several questions, principally the number of hours worked per day and activities field workers engaged in during the course of the year.

Methods included

(1) on-farm observations on two farms on the Central Coast during the period May-November 2014