Economic Impact of Local Food on the Central Oregon Economy
Local food connects communities with their farmers and ranchers and adds value to the economy, but the scale of this value has proven difficult to measure.
In 2016, COIC partnered with Oregon State University to pioneer an economic impact study based on the USDA Economic Impact of Food Systems Toolkit. Through surveys and interviews with 28 local farmers and ranchers, we were able to detail earnings and expenditures, then analyze this data to highlight the local economic contributions of these food producers. In 2017 we published our results, which demonstrated that these producers created a total of 28 full and part-time jobs and generated $1.5 million in sales, with $248,000 in wages and salaries on their farm operations.
The study also used this data to estimate the potential growth in this economy by modeling three scenarios: 1) increasing current production; 2) establishing a regional food hub; and 3) shifting grocery store purchases of vegetables to locally grown products.
Overall, the report demonstrates that local food producers have an important role in our economy, and that with minor shifts in overall production they could add additional jobs and revenue throughout the region. Check out the full study, read an overview, or share our PowerPoint presentation: