The Texas Center for Local Food provides education, research, and technical assistance to create regional food systems in Texas that support prosperous family farms, healthy Texans and vibrant rural economies.
Examples: -- I want to have my own farm, where do I start? (TOFGA, FarmShare Austin, ACC Elgin) -- I want to find a caterer who uses Texas grown ingredients. -- Where can I learn more about food policy issues? (FARFA) -- Where can I find out how to start a farm-to-school program? (TDA, SFC, existing F2S programs) -- Where can I learn about vegetable production for my farm? (TOFGA, Texas AgriLife) -- Where can I buy local food? (Buy Fresh Buy Local, Local Harvest) -- I need a farm CPA. -- I want to start a poultry farm. (NCAT, TOFGA) -- I want to know what the rules are for selling goods I make at home. -- Where can I buy organic feed? (Coyote Creek) -- Where can I find investors for my local food business?
Examples: Develop and catalyze development of new enterprises that use local farmers’ crops and employ local residents. -- Hold regional seminars and webinars to educate county and city economic development officials about the value that local food enterprise can bring to their community. -- Support development of new food enterprises that use Texas grown crops. -- Share information online about existing projects and local food enterprises. -- Stimulate regional collaboration and “food shed” development to increase local food supply. -- Help create replicable models for food production and distribution. -- Work with funders to identify potentially successful enterprises. -- Help communities design local food projects to leverage the use of existing resources and complement existing activities.
Examples: Share information about existing projects to develop new markets including value-added processing and food hubs. -- Research and report on how new markets may impact farmers' net income. -- Find funding for specific projects that explore and develop new markets. -- Share news and the best thinking on market trends for Texas family farmers. -- Collaborate statewide to facilitate supply chain development. -- Collaborate statewide to understand trends in consumer demand to support family farm and rural community prosperity. -- Collaborate on projects that explore in-state supply and demand for Texas grown crops.
Examples: Support capacity building through leadership training. -- Collaborate to increase food access for the neediest Texans. -- Provide business training for farmers and other local food enterprise owners. -- Training in organizational development. -- Collaborate to create statewide marketing campaigns. -- Support and initiate regional food studies. -- Find ways to fill regional food system gaps. -- Work with education groups to support food and nature education for children. -- Build bridges with FFA and 4-H. -- Be a welcoming gateway for conventional farmers to consider sustainable practices.