New Growth Associates is currently partnering with Crossroads Resource Center
in order to assess the economic impacts of food and agriculture re-localization efforts, inform investment strategies for food systems based infrastructure, and to empower communities to plan for their own sustainable futures. New Growth Associates is also moving forward a variety of niche grains projects including winter malting grade barley production, specialty wheat flours, and fresh, milled oats. Megan Phillips Goldenberg is supporting two low income food access assessments for the Food Basket in Hawaii and the Sacramento Food Bank in California, alongside an agricultural education infrastructure mapping study in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.
EXAMPLES OF PREVIOUS WORK
Crossroads Resource Center, in partnership with New Growth Associates, recently finished a food system strategic plan for the state of South
, commissioned jointly by that state’s departments of agriculture
and commerce. This work focused on preparing an action plan for investments
the state can make to ensure that food produced by South Carolina farms is
consumed by South Carolina consumers. Moreover, the study
has been produced in a highly collaborative process with a South Carolina
partners – who were so excited about the first draft that some people have
launched implementation activities, based on an early draft, prior to the
study’s release. This project engages
stakeholders as diverse as multi-millionaire specialty foods producers, to
broadline food distributors, to low-income farmers tilling a few acres, to
bankers, to national food processing companies, to environmentalists, and the
state Farm Bureau. Read the full report, here
While sub-contracting with WPM Consulting, Megan Phillips
Goldenberg conducted a feasibility study
for Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, titled, Finding Money for Food and
Agriculture Project in Colorado. The purpose of this study was to examine
the opportunities and challenges associated with financing food and agriculture
related projects in Colorado, since Colorado traditionally lags behind other
agriculture states regarding federal funding and financing mechanisms.
Twenty-three interviews and town hall style meetings were conducted in order to
produce a six-point plan for increasing awareness of opportunities and how best
to approach different funders for certain projects; increasing confidence and
decreasing dread and confusion about funding processes; and supporting advanced planning for grants and
financing opportunities. Less than one-and-a-half years after the release of
this study, two of the six points have been implemented by other community
In partnership with
WPM Consulting, Colorado State University, and LiveWell Longmont, Megan
Phillips Goldenberg analyzed community
food assessment data (townhall meeting transcripts, primary survey data,
secondary quanitative data, and academic literature) in order to determine
unique food access issues faced by residents of Longmont. Although Longmont was
once a stand-alone city, it now serves as a suburban bedroom community to both
metro Denver and metro Boulder, while also housing many of the region’s migrant
workers. This rapidly shifting demographic and identity created unique food
access issues not regularly addressed by standard “food desert” approaches.
Megan’s analysis gave rise to a plan for investing in what became known as a
hyper-local, neighborhood-based food system. In the subsequent two years since
the study was released, the findings of the study were used to leverage
community partnerships into the construction of a one-acre city farm in the
heart of the city’s hispanic community; “train the trainer” style cooking
classes at the community center; home gardener education courses; as well as to
advocate for the addition of healthy eating and active living to the city
comprehensive plan. At last contact, a health and wellness chapter for the city
comprehesive plan was being reviewed by city council and the outlook was good.
AVAILABLE PUBLICATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS
McFadden, D., A. Bauman, R. Hill, B. Jablonski, S. Deller, A. Morales, K.
Meter, M.P. Goldenberg
, D. Swenson, D. Tropp, T. Schmit, D. Conner, and
D. Hughes. 2015. Economic Impacts of
Local and Regional Food Systems.
USDA Agricultural Marketing Service:
Washtington D.C. Preprint.
K. and M.P. Goldenberg. 2015. Current
Capacities for Farm-to-School Purchasing, Data Collection, and Analysis in
South Carolina. College of Charleston: Charleston, SC.
Meter, K. and M.P. Goldenberg. 2013. Making Small Farms into Big Business. South Carolina Departments of Agriculture and Commerce with Palmetto Agribusiness Council.