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Trends in Farm-to-Table from a Sociological Perspective

      Research indicates a growing trend in consumers' preference for local foods
      • Grebitus C.
      • Lusk J.
      • Nayga M.
      Effect of distance of transportation on willingness to pay for food.
      • Baumann S.
      • Johnston J.
      Foodies: Democracy and Distinction in the Gourmet Foodscape.
      National Restaurant Association
      News and research: What's hot in 2013.
      • Martinez S.
      • Hand M.
      • Da Pra M.
      • et al.
      Local food systems: Concepts, impacts, and issues ERR97.
      Nation's Restaurant News
      Industry experts forecast 2012 trends.
      and, by association, sustainable growing practices. Experts in fields spanning academic sociology to business say different definitions for local and sustainability exist in the minds of consumers, but changes observed in restaurants and farmers' markets alike suggest a shifting paradigm rather than a fad, as business follows demand for the concept en gros. Surveys suggest consumers associate the term local with a number of positive attributes, ranging from food that is more nutritious to more supportive of their community's economy.
      • Grebitus C.
      • Lusk J.
      • Nayga M.
      Effect of distance of transportation on willingness to pay for food.
      Sociologically, some individuals suggest that simply the idea of local foods and sustainable farming practices helps to bridge demographics otherwise isolated from one another.
      • Baumann S.
      • Johnston J.
      Foodies: Democracy and Distinction in the Gourmet Foodscape.
      • Hinrichs C.
      • Lyson T.
      Remaking the North American Food System: Strategies for Sustainability.
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      References

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        • Lusk J.
        • Nayga M.
        Effect of distance of transportation on willingness to pay for food.
        Ecological Econ. 2013; 88: 67-75
        • Baumann S.
        • Johnston J.
        Foodies: Democracy and Distinction in the Gourmet Foodscape.
        Routledge, New York, NY2009
        • National Restaurant Association
        News and research: What's hot in 2013.
        (Accessed February 28, 2013)
        • Martinez S.
        • Hand M.
        • Da Pra M.
        • et al.
        Local food systems: Concepts, impacts, and issues.
        (Economic Research Service website. May 2010) (Published May 2010. Accessed February 28, 2013)
        • Nation's Restaurant News
        Industry experts forecast 2012 trends.
        (Technomic website) (Accessed February 26, 2013)
        • Hinrichs C.
        • Lyson T.
        Remaking the North American Food System: Strategies for Sustainability.
        University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, NE2009
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