Local Food Survey Results for Crawford and Vernon Counties
Local Food Networks in Southwestern Wisconsin
An Evaluation of Food and Culture Tourism
Fresh Food Production for Local Food Networks
This survey was conducted by researchers at the University of Wisconsin‐Madison and the University Extension with support from community partners to explore the vitality and viability of local food networks in Vernon (pop. 28,000) and Crawford Counties (pop. 17,000) in Southwest Wisconsin. This rural region was chosen due to the prevalence of tourism as a driver in the local economy, the region’s rural character and tradition of small family farms, and a growing interest in the impact of local food sales and agri-tourism.
The survey was designed with three parts to provide a clearer understanding of relationships between producers, retailers, and consumers in the region: a producer survey involving current and future interest in sales to local markets, a retailer and restaurant survey regarding current and future interest in sourcing from local producers, and a survey of regional tourists regarding the extent to which local food and culture influenced their visit to the region.
The results of these surveys are intended to better inform producers that are considering local marketing, restaurant and retail business owners considering offering local products, tourism planning organizations, and tourism based businesses. For purposes of this survey “local” was defined as a three hour driving distance from the buyer’s location.
Full reports may be viewed downloaded at http://crawford.uwex.edu/cnred/index.html#Localfood “Food and Culture Tourism Study Reports.” The full report is also attached below. Note that the results reported in this summary have been rounded to the nearest whole number.
Community & Economic Development Educator
Crawford County UW Cooperative Extension