The Appalachia Accessible Food Network is a collaborative project to accelerate the distribution of local foods into Appalachian Ohio communities by strengthening access, production, and consumption components of a local food value chain.The collaboration has received generous funding through the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation.
The Appalachian Center for Economic Networks (ACEnet) has invested in the regional food system by serving as a business incubator, operating the Food Ventures Center as a community kitchen, and the Nelsonville Food Hub and Business Incubator to provide business planning, accessible and affordable production, cooler, and freezer spaces.
Community Food Initiatives works to foster communities where everyone has equal access to healthy local food, including providing high quality, local produce to area food pantries and agencies. They empower community participation and decision making in the food system through education on gardening, food preservation, seed saving, and healthy cooking.
Rural Action’s Sustainable Agriculture Program works with stakeholders ranging from farmer to consumer, focusing on development of a regional food system through education and community organizing. They own and operate the Chesterhill Produce Auction, a social enterprise and key market for Appalachian farmers.
In the following video, Innovations in Rural Food Access, Food Partner Access Coordinator Carrie Carson presents a number of local initiatives addressing access to healthy, local, and affordable food in rural, Southeastern Ohio. Topics covered include Country Fresh Stops, a program working with businesses such as corner stores, gas stations, and roadside markets or “pop-up” markets in rural communities to source fresh products and offer them on a consistent basis, as well as the newly launched Veggie Van, Buying Club, and Donation Station projects.