Economically, we are what we eat
We currently import at least 90 percent our food from outside the Portland region, about $4.7 billion a year with related inputs included. We could increase our regional wealth by between $470 million and $940 million annually if we shifted between 10 and 20 percent of our purchases from imported to local foods.
Through his compelling article, Economically, we are what we eat, Bob Wise addresses those facts and examines the challenges of providing local foods in Oregon. He asks, if we are sitting in the midst of one of the world’s most food-abundant places, why is it so difficult to buy food grown here? The answer is that we import most of the food we eat. Bob considers ways to reverse this significant “leakage” dynamic. He proposes strategic solutions to findings from several recent research projects conducted by COC and regional partners that attempt to answer these questions: how we can support expanded agriculture to accommodate import substitution, what it would take to increase demand and supply of local food, how to help farmers keep a greater share of the food dollar and stay in business, and how we can increase our human and social capital to support the food economy.
The blog is the second in a series of six articles on import substitution on the Sustainable Business Oregon website.Tags:Economic, Economy, Food, import substitution, Oregon, Sustainability