June 13, 2017 at 12:25 pm

Food Studies Theme Gets Sugar Bush Foundation Grant

Food studies graphic, with outlines of eggplant, tomato, corn, etc.

From Compass

A Food Studies theme project was among those announced by the Ohio University Foundation as receiving funding through the Sugar Bush Foundation.

Sugar Bush is an organization that works with the university to improve quality of life in Appalachian Ohio. The foundation’s yearly projects foster sustainable environmental and socioeconomic development and encourage community engagement.

The Food Studies project is called the Initiative for Appalachian Food and Culture and is spearheaded by Dr. Theresa Moran, Director of Food Studies; and Dr. Paul Patton, Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Food Studies, with community partners Tom Redfern and Mary Nally of Rural Action and Community Food Initiatives. The initiative received year two funding of $34,678.

The Initiative for Appalachian Food and Culture is a multi-year research and outreach collaboration project that looks to build resilient economies and promote food security. The initiative aims to grow food security though a community-based sustainable food system that will

  • Provide sustainable economic and socio-cultural development opportunities for the region.
  • Advance information and knowledge about food access and food production resiliency.
  • Expand existing intellectual capital surrounding Appalachian food system to foster agricultural entrepreneurship.
  • Provide a model of sustainable food-based development for rural communities in the Appalachian region to buffer against agro-biodiversity loss, climate change and out-migration.

Year 2 will further weave the research capacity of Ohio University into food-based projects. Year 2 of the project is centered on research and data collection with emphasis on four components: 1) analysis of Chesterhill Produce Auction (CPA) socio-economic and demographic data to document the social enterprise of our food system, 2) conduct innovative research into “lost crops” to produce a native local resource for niche markets, 3) research and documentation of seed saving and plant breeding activities in Ohio, and 4) expand agricultural entrepreneurship through peer-to-peer education.

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