Show Menu

Home > Glossary

Glossary

The world of local foods calls upon some specialized terminology. Here are some terms that appear in this exhibit:



Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)


"Farm or network/association of multiple farms that offers consumers regular (usually weekly) deliveries of locally-grown farm products during one or more harvest season(s) on a subscription or membership basis. Customers have access to a selected share or range of farm products offered by a single farm or group of farmers based on partial or total advance payment of a subscription or membership fee."

(Local Foods Directories. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Marketing Service)

Cooperative


"A business owned and democratically controlled by the people who use its services and whose benefits are derived and distributed equitably on the basis of use."

(Co-ops 101. Donald A. Frederick, James J. Wadsworth, and E. Eldon Eversull. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Rural Development. 2012, page 1)

Direct-to-Consumer Marketing


"Local food marketing arrangement in which producers sell agricultural products directly to the final consumers, such as sales to consumers through farmers’ markets, CSAs or farm stands."

(Local Food Systems: Concepts, Impacts, and Issues. (2010). Martinez, S., et al. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service, p. 51)

Farmers Market


"Market that features two or more farm vendors selling agricultural products directly to customers at a common, recurrent physical location."

(Local Foods Directories. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Marketing Service)

[Although variant spellings of "Farmers Markets" exist, this exhibit uses the form with no apostrophe]

Food Hub


"Business or organization that actively manages the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of source-identified food products to multiple buyers from multiple producers, primarily local and regional producers, to strengthen the ability of these producers to satisfy local and regional wholesale, retail, and institutional demand."

(Local Foods Directories. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Marketing Service)

Food Mile


"The distance a food product travels from the place of production to the location where it is sold for final consumption."

(Local Food Systems: Concepts, Impacts, and Issues. (2010). Martinez, S., et al. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service, p. 51)

Foodways


"A term used to describe all of the traditional activities, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors associated with the food in your daily life. Foodways includes customs of food production, preservation, preparation, presentation, gathering, marketing (both buying and selling), uses of food products other than for eating and food folklore."

(Foodways: A 4-H Folkpatterns Project. (2010). 4-H Youth Programs, Cooperative Extension Service. The Michigan State University Museum, p. 2)

Intermediated Marketing


“All marketing opportunities in the local supply chain that are not farmer-to-consumer transactions, including farmers selling to grocers, restaurants, regional aggregators such as food hubs, and buying arrangements with the food service operations of schools, universities, hospitals, and other institutions.”

(Trends in U.S. Local and Regional Food Systems: A Report to Congress. (2015). Low, Sarah A., et al. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service, p. 5)

Local Food


"Food produced, processed, and distributed within a particular geographic boundary that consumers associate with their own community."

(Local Food Systems: Concepts, Impacts, and Issues. (2010). Martinez, S., et al. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service, p. 51)

Locality Food


"Food from a specific geographic location, such that the character and taste are attributed to geographic conditions, production methods and/or traditions of the locality. The name of the locality may be used in marketing the product, such as for state branding programs."

(Local Food Systems: Concepts, Impacts, and Issues. (2010). Martinez, S., et al. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service, pp. 51-52)

A roadside market operated by a local farmwoman in Hampshire County, Massachusetts in September 1940. Photo courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration.

"20120105-OC-AMW-0464"
(Photo courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration)

On-Farm Market


"Farm market managed by a single farm operator that sells agricultural and/or horticultural products directly to consumers from a location on their farm property or on property adjacent to that farm."

(Local Foods Directories. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Marketing Service)

All images on this page come from the USDA Flickr Photostream and are used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license