A foodshed describes the geographic area that supplies a city, town or community with food while a foodprint describes the land requirements needed to supply a population’s nutritional needs. The following fact sheets explore foodprints, foodsheds, and the relationship between diet, land and people. Click on the links below to learn more about foodprints, foodsheds and sustainable food systems.
What Is a Food System?
This fact sheet provides fundamental information necessary to understand foodprint and foodshed concepts. In addition, it includes information about how people can get involved at the community level.
Food Choice, Nutrition and the Environment
This fact sheet explains how research can inform food choices and food policy in ways that maximize nutrition and environmental assets like land, energy and water. In addition, it includes information about how changes in dietary recommendations can affect the environment and nutrition.
Carrying Capacity: A Measure of Land Resources
Carrying capacity describes the maximum number of individuals of a given species that an area’s resources can sustain indefinitely without significantly depleting those resources. This fact sheet examines a study of New York state that was designed to determine how diets differ in their land use and the correlation between diets and land availability.
What Is a Foodshed?
A foodshed describes the geographic area that supplies a population – in a city, town or community – with food. It answers the question, “Where does my food come from?” This fact sheet provides fundamental information necessary to understand the foodshed concept and model.
What Is a Foodprint?
A foodprint describes the land requirements needed to supply a population’s nutritional needs. The land requirements include the amount and type of land necessary to meet a population’s diet. This fact sheet provides fundamental information necessary to understand the foodprint concept.
Human Nutritional Equivalent (HNE): Measuring a Population’s Nutritional Needs
The Human Nutritional Equivalent (HNE) refers to the amount of food needed to meet all nutritional requirements for the average consumer for one year. This fact sheet examines HNEs across cultures and how they could help people examine how cities might change how and where they source food to help curb greenhouse emissions.
Determining Potential Foodsheds
Not all farms are able to produce all types of foods. Climate, soil quality, water availability, and topography all affect the variety and quantity of food a piece of land can produce. This fact sheet provides recommendations to help people determine what food people in their city need, where that food can be produced, and how we can all get access to local food.
Interpretation of findings
Limited Land — Which Foods Should be Grown Locally?
This fact sheet discusses the advantages of local food production and examines local food production in New York state to help answer the question, “If land is limited, which foods should be grown locally?”
Estimating Food Production Capability — Foodprints and Foodsheds
This fact sheet evaluates New York’s ability to supply food within state boundaries by mapping potential local foodsheds within the state, while also discussing the importance of looking at human food consumption patterns and land availability within the state.
New York State Foodprint and Foodshed
This fact sheet describes findings from the New York state research and how this information can be used to inform state-specific policy. It also discusses what food people in New York state need, whether or not the state has enough land to support these needs and whether or not establishing better foodsheds in the state can help New York decrease its overall foodprint.
Feeding Rural Communities
This fact sheet provides recommendations for how foodprint and foodshed models can be used to ensure rural communities have access to fresh, affordable, nutritious foods. It also discusses challenges for rural communities and compares land availability and requirements in the Midwest and New York state.
Feeding Big Cities
This fact sheet provides recommendations for how the Foodprint and Foodshed Model can ensure that cities have access to high-quality, affordable, nutritious foods. It also discusses challenges for big cities and compares land availability and foodshed potential in the Midwest and New York state.
This fact sheet illustrates how research can be used to demonstrate how the land base can feed the most people with recommendations for maximizing foodshed design and supplementing appropriately. Specifically, the fact sheet reviews challenges in maximization and provides instructions you can follow to help maximize your own personal foodshed.
Shrinking Your Foodprint
This fact sheet discusses why foodprints are important and provides recommendations to help communities and individuals minimize the impact their food choices have on the environment.