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Where do we buy our food?: Food retail and access Food Guardian Training February 8, 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Where do we buy our food?: Food retail and access Food Guardian Training February 8, 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Where do we buy our food?: Food retail and access Food Guardian Training February 8, 2010

2 Food retail Sale of food directly to consumers Supermarkets, convenience stores, supercenters (Wal-Mart, Target, etc.), warehouse clubs (Costco), drugstores, dollar stores, etc. Trends: growth of nontraditional grocery retailers

3 Grocery stores cut costs by: New technology (improves efficiency) Focus on the most profitable stores and geographic areas Consolidation through mergers and takeovers Carrying unique and superior products, such as new food products Updating store design and technologies to improve service Improving their image- advertising, etc.

4 Top 5 Food Retailers SupermarketGrocery sales 1.Wal-Mart Stores$127 Billion 2.Kroger Co.$60 Billion 3.Supervalu, Inc.$34 Billion 4.Safeway, Inc.$34 Billion 5.Ahold USA, Inc.$24 Billion Source: Progressive Grocers Super 50 (March 2007)

5 Food Retail in SF



8 Grocery Store Access Most low-income households use supermarkets as their main type of food store. –90% mainly shop at supermarkets –42% use convenience stores –36% use bakeries –33% shop at produce stands Source: Ohls et al. 1999

9 Grocery Store Access Approximately 1/3 of low-income households usually shop for food within a mile of where they live. Another third shop at stores 1-4 miles away Many food stamp recipients do not shop at the store nearest them. Source: Ohls et al. 1999

10 Grocery Store Access For households who do not usually shop in their neighborhoods, the most common reasons for going to other areas to shop were: Lack of stores – 51% High prices in their neighborhood – 47% Source: Ohls et al. 1999

11 Grocery Store Access Most low-income households use a car as their form of transportation for food shopping, but less than half use their own car. A majority often engage in careful shopping activities to stretch their food-buying resources 80-90% regard the store they go to as either good or excellent. Source: Ohls et al. 1999

12 Poverty and Obesity The most nutritious foods (fresh fruits and vegetables) are more expensive low-income families may choose cheaper foods, which are higher in sugar and fat Families in poverty often skip meals, a habit that puts them at higher risk for obesity Easy access to supermarkets has been shown to lead to healthier eating; low-income neighborhoods have fewer supermarkets. Children in low-income communities lack safe places to exercise and are less likely to participate in organized physical activities

13 The cost of a healthy diet

14 Direct Marketing CSA Farmers Markets U-Pick Farm stand Food coop Institutional Purchasing (schools, hospitals, etc.) Farm to Restaurant

15 CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Consumers purchase advance shares in a local farmers annual production and pick up weekly shares from a local distribution location, usually a members home or other convenient in-town location CSA members are active participants in local farming by: - Financing the farms yearly operating expenses - Sharing the risk and benefits of the growing conditions - Taking part in distribution - Working on the farm in some cases

16 Benefits of CSA Gives growers the fastest return on their product Encourages land stewardship Reduces potential food losses Supports biodiversity, agricultural diversity, and soil health by encouraging crop variety and rotation Maintains sense of community and builds stronger producer-consumer relationship Develops regional food supply and stronger local economy; keeps food dollars in local community Puts the farmers face on food and increases understanding of how, where, and by whom our food is grown

17 CSA Farms and Members Most CSA farms are small, independent, labor-intensive family farms Many use ecological, organic, or biodynamic farming practices and avoid heavy pesticide use and inorganic fertilizer Subscribers usually live in cities or towns

18 How it works Once the produce is harvested, the harvest is weighed and quantity of each item to be received by each share is determined (number of heads of lettuce, pounds of carrots, etc.) Some CSAs will have members count and weigh out their own share. Others have a distribution crew to weigh and package each share. One weeks share will contain enough vegetables for 2-4 people, typically 8-10 different varieties Shares are based on growing season, so selection and size varies throughout the season

19 Farmers Market Outdoor markets where farmers sell their products One of the oldest forms of direct marketing by small farmers Farmers markets in the US grew from 1,755 in 1994 to 4,385 in 2006. SF has 11 farmers markets, with a total of 250 farms selling at the markets.

20 Why are farmers markets important? Social/cultural Economy Health Environment Agricultural diversity

21 California Certified Farmers Markets Under CA law, farmers may only sell directly to consumers on the farm itself or at a Certified Farmers' Market. Only CA-grown agriculture sold Can only be operated by local governments, certified producers or nonprofit organizations.

22 U-Pick Farm that opens its fields to the public during harvest season Farms commonly offer fruits Consumers enjoy the farm visit, harvesting activity, fresh, high quality produce, and sometimes lower cost Farm saves on labor, packaging, and shipping costs Some also offer hayrides, birthday parties, petting zoo, pony rides, Harvest Festival and other activities

23 Farm Stand Place where a single farm sells its produce, either from the back of a truck, or from a roadside stand near or on the farm. Generally open only during warm weather, and may be self-serve.

24 Food Coop Worker or customer owned businesses that provide high- quality products at a good value Can be a retail store or buying club Committed to consumer education, product quality, and member control, and usually support their local community by selling produce grown locally by family farms Many were started in the 1960s and 1970s and the structure was shaped by social and cultural forces

25 Rainbow Grocery Cooperative, San Francisco, CA Worker-owned grocery cooperative Over 200 worker-owners Sells vegetarian food with minimal negative environmental and social impact Buys food from local and organic farmers, collectives, bakers, dairies, and other local businesses Provides workers with livable wage Nonhierarchical work space based upon respect, mutuality, and cooperation Donate to other nonprofits Encourage bicycling, mass transit, and alternative forms of transportation In-store composting, recycling, and reusing resources when possible

26 Barriers to food access Lack of grocery stores Food availability at stores, especially healthy foods and variety of foods Transportation Cost Others???

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