Perspectives of Locality in Madison, WI: Knowing Farmers, Food, and Fields of View
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Wisconsin?s deep-rooted traditions of farming and activism fuse to form a unique and dynamic local food landscape. This comprehensive overview of local food landscapes explores alternative definitions of local food, describes ecological and cultural landscape features, examines motivating factors driving food identity, and produces a spatial data model mapping geographic extents of ?locality.? Limited research has been conducted to define ?local? in terms of the geographic distance between production and consumption, despite its inherently spatial nature. The landscape of ?locality? serves as a fuzzy concept in which meaningful boundaries can vary considerably according to context or conditions. Previous research studies prefer to define ?local? based on well-recognized marketing arrangements, such as direct-to-consumer markets. This research study determines the geographic extent of locality according to Madisonian?s conceptions of local food. Survey methodology gathered general public opinions of geographic ?local food? boundaries using a map experiment. Our research study used geographic information system (GIS) technology to overlay the survey results and model landscape extents using fuzzy transparency maps. Additionally, interviews conducted with a local food crusader Chef Tory Miller and an assistant manager of a cooperative grocery store expressed the duality of local food as both tangible and abstract. Our findings indicate that Wisconsin identity plays an important role in Madisonians? geographic local food identity.
Includes Images, Photographs, Maps, Tables, Appendix and Bibliography.