Eat Local

Published on May 4th, 2014 | by Mary Gerush


On Strolling Heifers And The Locavore Index

Strolling Cows

How does your state rate with respect to promoting and supporting local food? Find out now. Scan the Strolling of the Heifers’ third annual Locavore Index. (Results below.)

Strolling of the Heifers, a Vermont-based local food advocacy group, compiled data supporting four locavore-related measures where data was available for all U.S. states, looking at:

  1. The number of farmers markets as of March 13, 2014, according to the USDA
  2. The number of CSAs (community supported agriculture organizations) as of March 13, 2014, using data supplied by Local Harvest
  3. The percentage of school districts with farm-to-school programs to buy and feature locally produced, farm-fresh foods as of May, 2013, based on USDA data
  4. The number of food hubs — facilities that aggregate, distribute, and market foods from a group of local farms and food producers — as of January 15, 2014, according to the USDA

After taking state populations into account and weighting the four measures (farmers markets 30%, CSAs 30%, farm-to-school programs 20%, and food hubs 20%), each state received its official Locavore Index score.

And The Most Locavore-Friendly States Are…

Below are the results in a handy infographic along with Strolling of the Heifers’ 10 reasons to eat local food. You can view the data used to develop the scores on Strolling of the Heifers’ web site.

Locavore Index 2014

I find it interesting that Vermont comes in at #1 since that is where the index’s creator is based (no offense intended — I might just have to move there). And severely depressing that my home state — Texas — ranks dead last. Crap. Well we have no where to go but up, right? I also wonder how this index would change if somehow the states’ geographical size were considered. Hmmm… Thank you Strolling of the Heifers for making us think about these important bits of locavore info.

How does your state rank? What can we do to help our states move up the scale?

Locavore Index: Strolling of the Heifers | Image credit: Strolling Cows via Shutterstock

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About the Author

Hi all! I'm Mary Gerush - a recovering corporate worker bee turned good-farm-real-food advocate and writer who wants to help people understand what they're eating. I tend a tiny urban farm in Dallas, TX, and hope to scale up one day soon. Omnivore through-and-through, there's not much I love to eat more than a butter-basted grass fed steak fresh from a searing hot cast iron skillet. Follow me on , , and !

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