All roads lead to the farmers market?: using network analysis to measure the orientation and central actors in a community food system through a case comparison of Yolo and Sacramento County, California
Little is known about how farms and markets are connected. Identifying critical gaps and central hubs in food systems is of importance in addressing a variety of concerns, such as navigating rapid shifts in marketing practices as seen during the COVID-19 pandemic and related food shortages. The constellation of growers and markets can also reinforce opportunities to shift growing and eating policies and practices with attention to addressing racial and income inequities in food system ownership and access. With this research, we compare network methods for measuring centrality and sociospatial orientations in food systems using two of America’s most high-producing agricultural counties. Though the counties are adjacent, we demonstrate that their community food systems have little overlap in contributing farms and markets. Our findings show that the community food system for Yolo County is tightly interwoven with Bay Area restaurants and farmers’ markets. The adjacent county, Sacramento, branded itself as America’s Farm-to-Fork capital in 2012 and possesses network hubs focused more on grocery stores and restaurants. In both counties, the most central actors differ and have been involved with the community food system for decades. Such findings have implications beyond the case studies, and we conclude with considerations for how our methods could be standardized in the national agricultural census.
© The Author(s) 2022. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Version of Scholarly Record of this Article is published in Agriculture and Human Values, 2022, available online at: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10460-022-10345-y . Keywords: alternative food networks; centrality; community food networks; direct sales; peri-urban; short-supply chains.
Fuchs-Chesney, J., Raj, S., Daruwalla, T. et al. All roads lead to the farmers market?: using network analysis to measure the orientation and central actors in a community food system through a case comparison of Yolo and Sacramento County, California. Agric Hum Values 40, 157–173 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-022-10345-y