Getting local farm food to customers in ways that make financial and logistical sense for both farmers and consumers has long challenged the growth of direct-to-consumer sales. And despite a surge of interest in local foods spurred by the pandemic, there have been few data sources available to farmers and local food advocates for measuring consumers’ contemporary engagement with local food systems and market types.
In this brief, Jess Carson, Analena Bruce, and Isaac Leslie describe data collected in the May 2021 Granite State Poll and find that while more than 80 percent of Granite Staters report buying local farm food at least a few times a month (“occasionally”) in the past year, there is significant variation in engagement across the state.
New Hampshire consumers along the Vermont border are especially likely to occasionally buy local farm food, while Coös residents report especially low rates. There is also a sharp divide in the types of markets that Granite Staters describe as easily accessible, and despite the pandemic, in-person options like farm stands and brick-and-mortar stores were most often identified as easily accessible.
The authors suggest that their findings provide useful information for farmers and food advocates by revealing opportunities to widen and deepen New Hampshire customers’ engagement with local farm foods.
Carsey School of Public Policy
Regional Issue Brief No. 65
Durham, N.H. : Carsey School of Public Policy, University of New Hampshire
Carson, Jessica A.; Bruce, Analena; and Leslie, Isaac, "Half of New Hampshire Residents Buy Local Farm Food at Least a Few Times a Month, But Engagement Varies by County" (2021). The Carsey School of Public Policy at the Scholars' Repository. 435.
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