Check out the diagram below from a report entitled, Tiers of the Food System: A New Way of Thinking About Local and Regional Food. Some very smart researchers over at the UW Madison Center For Integrated Agricultural Systems generated the report, which outlines the framework of our modern American food system.
The report depicts our food system as concentric circles of food production and consumption, with the vast majority of supply being produced at a distant outer ring, far removed from most Americans’ immediate circle of reference and influence.
From farmers’ markets to supermarkets, there is a spectrum of relationships between consumers and those that grow, process, distribute and market food. The burgeoning local food trend has caused many people to seek food from—and personal contact with—local farmers as a way to connect with the food they eat.
But it’s the bullseye of the Personal Production of Food, aka (Tier 0), that acknowledges the growing number of people who grow, hunt or process at least some of their own food that I want to point out. This tier includes backyard and community gardens, home food preservation, and subsistence farming, hunting, gathering, fishing and backyard chickens!
Tier 0, the bullseye, is the tier we’re trying to facilitate and empower here at Eggzy.