Wednesday, March 31, 2010

It's the Infrastructure, Stupid!

Tom Philpott writes in Grist that the biggest problem of the Local Food movement is the lack of infrastructure:
When I helped start Maverick Farms in 2004 -- and immediately started trying to source local meat and dairy for our farm dinners -- it quickly became evident that the infrastructure needed to create an accessible, efficient, and profitable alternative food system in our area simply didn't exist. ...
It is the lens through which I view the related topic of corporate consolidation of the food system -- as large companies swallow up share of the food market, they shutter "inefficient" small processing plants and focus on operating ever fewer and ever larger facilities. The withering away of local-food infrastructure is a direct consequence of consolidation.

In other words, it's the direct result of the "Wal-Mart"ing of America. The shuttering of small and local businesses in favor of large national ones has effects far above and beyond saving a few cents in your trip to the store.

No comments: