What's the Latest Development?
Community food sellers represent the economic model of the future, says Michael Shuman, director of an innovative financing company based in Oakland, California. Businesses which are locally owned, employ locals, and use mostly local goods and services generate 13 jobs per $1 million spent. Non-locally owned companies create 3 jobs per $1 million spent. In many areas, including San Francisco, local food start ups are proving very successful and their competitive advantage will always be in the community.
What's the Big Idea?
Farmers' markets and local food producers are not quaint nostalgia. They produce real social and economic benefits for their host communities. In fact, they confer so many benefits that the federal government is increasingly eager to assist their construction. "Because it fuels the market—a 2009 Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship study showed that farmers' markets in that state pumped more than $71 million into the economy—the USDA is committed to farmers who practice the model."
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