Navigating the Food System Literature

The Basics

When you start wading through all of the literature that has been written about our industrial food system, you can start to feel a little schizophrenic about what it is you should or should not eat. (Should I choose organic? What about Big Organic, isn't that bad too? How do I know what local means? Is Florida included in local? What if I just really really like grapes? Is that wrong? Should I stop eating meat? Should I be vegan? Should I ever eat again????)

Anyways we understand that it's all a bit muddled. Here are some folks who seem to have it figured out, to some extent.

Barbara Kingsolver Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

Michael Pollan The Omnivore's Dilemma

Vaclav Smil Feeding the World : A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century

Wendell  Berry's The Pleasure of Eating

Rich Priog (et al) Food, Fuel and Freeways (available at (awesome links to myriad publications, definitely worth taking a look)


WNC Local Food System Reports

THE INFRASTRUCTURE OF FOOD PROCUREMENT AND DISTRIBUTION: Implications for Farmers in Western North Carolina by Allison Parrett.  Great insight into the region's agriculture processing and distribution infrastructure.

Overview of the WNC Food & Farming Economy  All the statistics as of 2006.

Results from a Western North Carolina Farm-to-College Survey.  By Laura Kirby.  Very interesting!