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A Food Systems Spire of Excellence at the University of Vermont.

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Presentation on theme: "A Food Systems Spire of Excellence at the University of Vermont."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Food Systems Spire of Excellence at the University of Vermont

2 Submitted by: Prof. Vern Grubinger, Extension (Chair) Prof. Linda Berlin, Extension and CALS Prof. Elizabeth Berman, Libraries Prof. Naomi Fukagawa, College of Medicine Prof. Jane Kolodinsky, CALS Prof. Deborah Neher, CALS Prof. Bob Parsons, CALS Prof. Amy Trubek, CALS Prof. Kimberly Wallin, Rubenstein School

3 Paradox to address Diet-related health problems Food-borne disease Food insecurity/hunger Agricultural pollution Amidst unparalleled productivity

4 Food systems defined An interconnected web of activities, resources and people that extends across all domains involved in providing human nourishment and sustaining health (including production, processing, packaging, distribution, marketing, consumption and disposal of food). Reflects and responds to social, cultural, political, economic, health and environmental conditions Can be identified at multiple scales, from a household kitchen to a city, county, state or nation.

5 Our model

6 Our vision Develop solutions to pressing problems in food systems through world-class transdisciplinary research, teaching and outreach dedicated to improving economic, ecological and human well-being.

7 Our focus Local and regionally-scaled food systems to: Move goods and services within a day’s time Minimize storage, handling and energy usage Enable the establishment of mutually beneficial relationships among food system entities Provide consistent political, social, and regulatory support

8 History of challenging business as usual Varied topography, harsh climate and limited infrastructure leads to entrepreneurship Food is significant economic engine in Vermont (31% of private business establishments involve food) Direct sales, organic farming, conservation easements Why Vermont as a laboratory?

9 Why UVM? Northeast opportunities Research and funding Nationally acclaimed entrepreneurship UVM commitments to environment and health Undergrads exploring food systems Already involved in transdisciplinary approaches

10 4 research focus areas Food, Culture and Health Energy and Food Policy, Ecology and Land Use Regional Value Chains

11 Achieving success Create 4 faculty positions Endow a Chair in Regional Food Systems Research Offer food systems research planning grants Host biennial national symposia Establish UVM Regional Food Systems Advisory Council Engage the campus community Capitalize on food systems research to recruit students Commit to a leadership role

12 Potential Funding NIFA (food security, climate change, sustainable energy, childhood obesity and food safety) NIH Roadmap for Medical Research Vermont foundations W.K. Kellogg and other national foundations

13 Measuring Success - internal Year 1 3 transdisciplinary proposals submitted ($1 million) Masters in Food Systems program launched; 2 Ph.D. students 5 faculty associate refereed publications with food systems Campaign initiated to endow a Food Systems Chair Year 2 $5 million in grant proposals submitted 15 faculty associate publications with food systems Chair’s endowment reaches $2 million in pledges 5 master’s students and 2 doctoral students

14 Measuring success - external Logic Model for Engaged Food Systems Scholarship Outcomes Example Program Areas Short Term Metrics Medium Term Metrics Long Term Metrics “Farm to School” (Food, Culture, Health) healthier menusfruit & vegetable intakeobesity, diabetes rates nutrition awarenesssugar consumptionacademic performance use of local productslocal farm income/profitfarms stay in business “New Dairy Products” (Regional Value Chains) new products developedsales of new productsfood sector profitability regional markets establishedtransportation costsenergy, carbon flows farm partnerships designedsales/profits per farmland use pattern

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