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Ken Meter: “Local Food as a Strategy for Economic Recovery,” Nov. 14

Ken Meter: “Local Food as a Strategy for Economic Recovery,” Nov. 14

Ken MeterFinal Event in ‘Year of CSA Speaker Series’

Our nation spends hundreds of billions of dollars annually on medical treatment for food-related diseases. At the same time, the United States is mired in a tepid economic recovery.

Please join the FairShare CSA Coalition for a free talk by Ken Meter, one of the most experienced food system analysts in the United States, as he discusses challenges and solutions for the issues in our nation’s food system. His work serves as a national model for analyzing rural economics.

Meter will present “Local Food as a Strategy for Economic Recovery” from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14 at the UW Madison Soils Building, room 270, 1525 Observatory Dr., Madison. This event  is free and open to the public.

Meter will make the case that the emergent and energetic work around local food systems currently being undertaken in communities throughout the United States is the essential work required to create economic recovery. This is so because food is an essential component of life and an expense undertaken by all on a recurring basis. If our society is to remain healthy and avoid burdensome medical costs, we must make sure that everyone has access to healthy food and has the skills to prepare this food safely. This presentation will draw upon the speaker’s experiences working in urban and rural communities, as well as economic analyses of farm and food economies in 30 states.

“We know that CSAs and local food purchases are powerful ways to utilize our dollars to empower and build our local economies,” said Kiera Mulvey, FairShare’s executive director. “Ken’s talk will contextualize these localized movements within the wider discussions of local, regional, and national economic recovery and highlight the critical role of local food movements.”

Meter a ‘local food’ pioneer

West Star FarmMeter’s work integrates market analysis, business development, systems thinking, and social concerns. As president of Crossroads Resource Center, Meter has 41 years’ experience in inner-city and rural community capacity building.

His pioneering study of the farm and food economy of Southeast Minnesota, “Finding Food in Farm Country,” helped strengthen a collaborative of food producers and led to the creation of the Hiawatha Fund, a regional investment fund. Meter serves as founding member of the board of the fund.

His innovative tool for measuring financial assets in low-income communities, the Neighborhood Income Statement and Balance Sheet, helped spark development of the Latino Mercado in South Minneapolis.

He serves as a consultant to the USDA, EPA, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and several universities. He managed the grant review panel for USDA Community Food Projects Competitive Grants Program.

Meter is a contributing editor to the Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development. He also writes occasionally for Successful Farming magazine, Edible Twin Cities, Grist, and Cooking Up a Story.

For Meter’s full résumé, click here.

Thanks to our co-sponsors!

Meter’s talk is co-sponsored by the UW Lecture Series; promotional partnership provided by the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS), Urban and Regional Planning Department, UW Slow Food, F.H. King Students for Sustainable Agriculture, Community and Environmental Sociology, REAP, UW Extension Dane County, WI Foodie, Community Groundworks, and Sustain Dane.

For more information, please call (608) 226-0300 or email to info@csacoalition.org.

FairShare CSA Coalition

FairShare CSA Coalition