Many resources exist for improving the current state of our food system. Below is a sampling of resources to support that work. 

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Beginning Farmer’s Resource Network of Maine

This resource is a clearinghouse of information aggregating outside links and manuals on topics ranging from farmstead planning, to energy use, and farm safety.

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Comprehensive Assessment of Soil Health: The Cornell Framework Manual

This document outlines why soil health is important, how to conduct and assess soil health, and what tools are available for soil health management.

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Doing Food Policy Councils Right: A guide to Development and Action. Mark Winne and Associates, 2012

This presentation outlines the basics of Food Policy Council development, including why they are important, how to create and organize them, and additional resources for support.

Growing Maine’s Food Industry, Growing Maine: The Maine Food Cluster Project (October 2015)

A project of the Harvard Kennedy School, Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government. Maine people have a rich tradition of growing, harvesting and manufacturing food and beverages. To understand the potential of these industries for greater growth, researchers from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and Harvard Business School investigated the industrywide or “cluster” dimensions of Maine’s agriculture, seafood and food and beverage processing sectors. The research team collected and analyzed data on Maine’s economic performance, the performance of its traded food cluster, perspectives of business leaders, the make-up of Maine’s food cluster support system and cluster growth initiatives from other regions.

ME Farmer Needs Report

Maine Farmer Needs and Priorities Report

Maine Farmers' Needs and Priorities was produced with input from a statewide series of meetings from Aug. 2018 - Jan. 2019 hosted by University of Maine Cooperative Extension and coordinated by a committee facilitated by Maine Food Strategy and Maine Farmland Trust. Data contained in the report are the direct feedback of participants engaged in the outreach process which was designed to gather input on the needs and priorities of Maine farmers. The framework of those discussions and this report was organized in accordance with the 2013 Strategic Plan of the Agricultural Council of Maine (AGCOM).

Information in the report is strictly data with minimal interpretation. The next step in this initiative is for industry representatives to review the report, to identify themes that are representative of and broadly applicable to Maine’s diverse farming community, and to prioritize action items relevant to economic sustainability. Once identified, these unifying themes can serve as the basis for further program and policy development work that benefits Maine farms and businesses.

Other groups represented on the project coordinating committee included Maine Sustainable Ag Society, Coastal Enterprises Inc., and Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association.

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Maine Sustainable Agriculture Society: “More Maine Meat” Processor Survey Report

This report synthesizes the results of survey to slaughterhouses and processors of red meat in the state of Maine, to gauge interest in expansion and working with local producers, as well as the desires, motivations, and barriers to do so.

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New England Food System Data

A collection of interactive data created in Tableau.