Community Economic Development

Community Economic Development

We all want our communities to be  vibrant, healthy, and equitable. How do we get there? Local and regional food systems are key —they contribute to economies that keep dollars circulating locally, and they help make resilient and inclusive places. 

Explore below a library of recent and featured resources related to building community wealth and resiliency.

Featured Resources

Annotated Bibliography on Structural Racism Present in the U.S. Food System 10th EditionMichigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems

The annotated bibliography provides current research and outreach on structural racism in the U.S. food system for the food system practitioner, researcher, educator, and advocate. Our intention is to update this resource on a recurring basis. We suggest it be used as a companion resource for training or education sessions on structural racism in the food …

2023, ,

WSDA was tasked through legislative proviso to explore the barriers and challenges underrepresented farmers and ranchers face, with the goal of identifying opportunities to support more diverse representation within the agriculture community in Washington state.
Of all the important issues underrepresented farmers and ranchers elevated for this report, there is a single common theme connecting them; that community and community networks are essential foundations to the success of farmers and ranchers. This also means, that community connection, inclusion, safety, and belonging are key components necessary to improve equity for underrepresented farmers and ranchers in Washington.
This report is one small step toward shaping a more equitable future where farmers and ranchers from every race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, physical ability, social status, and creed can access the resources they need to thrive within Washington’s agriculture sector. In this envisioned future, farmers and ranchers who have experienced marginalization are included at the decision-making table, feel understood by policymakers, and are able to access holistic, equitable, and effective support that aligns with the languages they speak, the cultures they come from, and the identities they hold.

Value Chain GuidebookValue Chain Initiative

A Process for Value Chain Development

2005, , ,
Institutional Investment in Regional Food- An OverviewElliott Smith, Kitchen Sync Strategies

An overview of the role of institutions in building equitable regional food systems

2021, ,
Spectrum of Insitutional InvestmentElliott Smith, Kitchen Sync Strategies

Elliott Smith of Kitchen Sync Strategies outlines the concept of institutional investment in equitable food systems through explaining some of the conditions that make it necessary and defining some terms.

2021, , ,
Key Components of Success for Institutional InvestmentElliott Smith, Kitchen Sync Strategies

What institutions need to know to move beyond procurement policies and build partnerships for an equitable food economy

2021, , ,
Institutional Investment in PraxisElliott Smith, Kitchen Sync Strategies

This article highlights examples of institutions investing in their local food systems

2021, , ,
Toward Market Cities: Lessons on Supporting Public Market Systems From Pittsburgh, Seattle, and TorontoProject for Public Spaces, Market Cities Intiative

Toward Market Cities: Lessons on Supporting Public Market Systems From Pittsburgh, Seattle, and Toronto This report includes background on the Market Cities Initiative and its research efforts to date, summaries of the three partner city’s findings and recommendations, and broad takeaways for other cities looking to strengthen their market systems or leading their own Market City …

2020, ,
FoodWorks: A Vision to Improve NYC’s Food SystemThe New York City Council

This report outlines a plan for key legislative changes, public and private investments, infrastructure improvements, and partnerships to improve the food system in New York …

Roadmap for City Food Sector Innovation and InvestmentUrban Sustainability Directors Network

The purpose of this project
is to develop a roadmap for cities to create innovative, resilient and productive local and regional food systems that deliver
near-term benefits and sustainable value.


This report chronicles the impacts of Rutgers Food Innovation Center’s broader social mission and catalogue its efforts to achieve these …

Healthy Food and Small StoresThe Food Trust

Healthy Food and Small Stores A report on innovations to improve access to nutritious, affordable food in small stores—including corner stores, bodegas, convenience stores, fuel-based retail and rural grocers—a key factor in access for underserved communities. Year …

2015, , ,
Harvesting Opportunity – The Power of Regional Food System Investments to Transform CommunitiesFederal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Harvesting Opportunity – The Power of Regional Food System Investments to Transform Communities A collaboration between the Federal Reserve and USDA, this report focuses on regional food systems as a means for enhancing economic opportunity. Year …

2017, ,
Growing Local – A Community Guide to Planning for Agriculture and Food SystemsN/A

Growing Local – A Community Guide to Planning for Agriculture and Food Systems This guide is meant to help community members work with local governments to advance plans and policies to support agriculture and food production, and provide access to healthy food to all community members. Year …

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Equitable Food Oriented Development Brown PaperEFOD Collaborative

Equitable Food Oriented Development Brown Paper Equitable Food Oriented Development (EFOD) is a development strategy that uses food and agriculture to create economic opportunities, healthy neighborhoods, and explicitly seeks to build community assets, pride, and power by and with historically marginalized communities. Read the Brown Paper written by the EFOD …


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