Resources for Food Service

Chefs, food service vendors and institutions may find using local foods challenging in terms of supplier and product consistency, local market variation and other variables which are hard to control. In some areas local government, business and non-profit organizations are working on programs and materials to assist businesses interested in supporting local growers (and local economies). These links provide a list of potential resources facilitating this process. Local county Cooperative Extension offices may be useful as well.

Food Business/Entrepreneurship

Grower/Vendor Listings

  • FarmsReach -an online farm food marketplace that connects farmers to business buyers.
  • Local Harvest -National site with extensive listings of local growers, CSA's, markets etc, with embedded google map, and farm profiles
  • Foodzie -Online marketplace for discovering and buying food directly from small scale food producers and growers from specific regions.
  • EatWild -Find grass fed beef, lamb, goats, bison, poultry, pork, dairy and other wild edibles in your area (NYS listings).
  • Eat Well Guide -Online directory of fresh, locally grown and sustainably produced food.

See Consumer Guide page for other resources.

Recipes/Nutritional Guides

See Food & Nutrition page for other nutrition related resources.

Institutional Programs

  • Bringing Local Food to Local Institutions Publication providing farmers, school administrators, and institutional food-service planners with contact information and descriptions of existing programs that have made connections between local farmers and local school lunchrooms, college dining halls, or cafeterias in other institutions. 
  • Health Care Without Harm Healthy Foods Systems Tools and resources to help health care institutions make decisions about food, including local sourcing, that can have a substantial impact on public and environmental health
  • Sustainable Food Systems LLC List of useful resources for food service operators wishing to adopt more healthy, sustainable practices.
  • Sustainable Table Resources for cafeterias and dining halls

Farm to School Programs/Resources

College Campus Initiatives & Resources

  • Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive (CoFed) Working to empower students to establish co-ops serving ethically-sourced and sustainable food on college campuses nationwide..
  • Farm-to-College Programs to connect colleges and universities with producers in their area to provide local farm products for meals and special events on campus
  • Real Food Challenge Encouraging the procurement of "real food" on college and university campuses to catalyze the transformation of the larger food system.

Food Laws, Safety and Regulations