Essential Business Infrastructure

In addition to production, processing, distribution and consumption, the Food System depends for its ongoing and sustainable functioning on the following local enterprises:

  • Food system waste handling: Any enterprise that collects, transports, composts, buries, or recycles o otherwise disposes of the waste produced by any sector of the food system.

o   Of particular importance to this project are enterprises that handle animal wastes; enterprises that recycle agricultural plastics and chemicals; enterprises that can process wastes from food processing; and enterprises that handle household, restaurant, retail and institutional food waste streams.

  • Farm production input providers: Any enterprise that specializes in, or for which a significant activity includes, providing physical inputs essential to the successful production of farm (food and feed) products.

o   Although not strictly “enterprises”, farm landowners - non-farmers who make their land available to farmer, whether through formal or informal leases or simply in exchange for perceived benefits (keeping the land from growing up to brush), contribute essential physical inputs (land) to the food system.  According to USDA’s 2007 Census of Agriculture, over 21% of farmland in New York State is rented from someone other than the farmer. 

  • Farm production service providers:  Any enterprise that specializes in, or for which a significant activity includes, providing services essential to the successful production of farm (food and feed) products.

o   Farm laborers, while not strictly “enterprises”, provide essential services to the food system and are included here.

  • Farm business service providers:  Any enterprise that specializes in, or for which a significant activity includes, providing services essential to the successful management of a farm business.

  • Agencies:  Any federal, state, county, or municipal agency that specializes in, or for which a significant activity includes, the regulation of food system enterprises, or the provision of services or funds to food system enterprises.

  • Clubs and associations:  Any not-for-profit membership enterprise whose primary purpose is the promotion of the interests of farms or farmers, or for the promotion of a viable food system.

  • Academic institutions:  Any enterprise that specializes in, or for which a significant activity includes, the education of farmers or the education of consumers, government officials, or other members of the public about the food system.
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