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The Local Food Mapping Project

An interactive mapping project helping consumers to source locally produced food.

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Written by DeletedUser

Connecting Consumers to Local Production
A map project showing city dwellers where to go to find local food.  Elements that could be included:

  • Locations and scheduling of local farmer's markets
  • Grocers that carry locally supplied produce
  • Restaurants that source ingredients and produce locally
  • Community gardening projects

The map could also include a broader picture of the region:

  • Farm locations with information on what kinds of goods are produced during which seasons
  • Information on local food growers - stories about specific family-owned farms etc., that would humanize the picture of local food production

Connecting to the Bigger Picture
If this was created on a large scale as an online interactive project, individuals as well as business owners could contribute information about local restaurants who source locally, and grocers who offer local goods.  This means community members could share tips on the best places to shop and patronize, and business owners could use it as a means of promoting themselves for their efforts to source locally and ethically.  This means there would be the added effect of encouraging businesses towards better practices.

The kind of narrative-style data such as that collected for apps like Louise's 'Building Transparency App' ( /open/localfood/concepting/building-transparency-app/), and Susan's 'Food Individualizer' ( /open/localfood/concepting/food-individualizer/) could also be applied here.   For example - click on a region to learn about the nature of food production in the area, or specific examples of local growers, producers, etc.

A wider international picture of food production in different areas of the world might also contribute to a compelling narrative, connecting food consumption to a clearer story of it's production for individual consumers.

Alternatively, on a smaller low-tech scale, I think a paper version on a city specific basis would be great as an insert in Jennifer Yen's 'Local Foods Welcome Basket'.  It could focus on local farmer's markets and restaurants and food retailers who source locally, and could include recipes and other relevant information about the city and the region. 

This could also work with a rating system project like the Golden Eggplant ( /open/localfood/concepting/localicious-and-the-golden-eggplant/).



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DeletedUser

I really like the interactive aspect of this concept. It takes the previous similar concepts to the next level!

What if you also added a calendar that lists the fruit/produce that are in season? Or have a visual key that allows people to click on the food item they want and those local farmers and vendors who have it will "light up" on the map?

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DeletedUser

Thanks Quyen. I like both of these ideas. I could definitely see local growers having the option of updating produce available seasonally. And it might work well to connect this info to the local farmer's market as well.

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DeletedUser

I love the idea of clicking on a food item one wants and finding out where it's available! How about also including user reviews (like Yelp)... so that people can share information like "This farmer sells the best peaches I've ever eaten!"

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