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Community Food Lab

Community Food Lab Community Food Lab is a food system design firm, building healthy, inclusive, and accessible food through design, advocacy, and engagement. Launched by Erin White in 2013, Community Food Lab uses the creative, hybrid setting of a design lab to connect food system needs with socially-oriented design methods.

Our business is to provide clients with new value by engaging the food system. Our social mission is to increase participation in local food systems. We believe that healthy communities need healthy food systems, and designers have an important role to play in developing both. Our practice treats the entire food system as opportunity for design thinking to identify new and unseen value for the hea

Our business is to provide clients with new value by engaging the food system. Our social mission is to increase participation in local food systems. We believe that healthy communities need healthy food systems, and designers have an important role to play in developing both. Our practice treats the entire food system as opportunity for design thinking to identify new and unseen value for the hea

Operating as usual

Back in 2017, a team from Florence, South Carolina invited us to help think about an ambitious new project transforming ...
05/28/2021
Spring 2021 Newsletter

Back in 2017, a team from Florence, South Carolina invited us to help think about an ambitious new project transforming an urban district. We checked back in on the City Center Farmers Market and are thrilled to share what they’ve created!

Read about it in our Spring 2021 Newsletter - https://mailchi.mp/f4ed5a58e7af/spring-2021-newsletter

Back in 2017, a team from Florence, South Carolina, invited us to help think about an ambitious new food project meant to transform an urban district. This spring, we checked back on the City Center Market and are thrilled to share what this incredible team has created! Florence is a city of about 4...

How do we create solutions that go beyond "food deserts" and address root causes of health and food access, particularly...
04/21/2021
Beyond Food Deserts: Ending Food Apartheid

How do we create solutions that go beyond "food deserts" and address root causes of health and food access, particularly in Black communities?
Really important questions, and great discussion!

One of out four Baltimore residents lives in a neighborhood without a grocery store. Why is it so hard hard for some city residents to access to…

"In the heart of an industrial area, the North Richmond Farm was a vacant lot for 40 years before it was transformed by ...
04/20/2021
Civil Eats TV: Planting with Purpose at Urban Tilth | Civil Eats

"In the heart of an industrial area, the North Richmond Farm was a vacant lot for 40 years before it was transformed by Urban Tilth in 2016. It took four years to clean it and another two to build up the soil. Today, its rows are full of cabbage, kale, mustard greens, collards, onions, as well as a hoop house, a greenhouse, and a chicken coop. A team of BIPOC employees, some of whom started volunteering in high school, manage the fields, pack the weekly boxes, and run the farm stands. And there is a steady stream of elders who are dedicated volunteers."

How Doria Robinson, the force behind the community-focused urban farm, transformed a ‘food desert’ into verdant farms, gardens, and open spaces in Richmond, California.

04/16/2021
Learn - Build - Eat | Piedmont Triad Regional Council, NC

This is a big deal for regional food systems plannng and development, not only for the Piedmont Triad but for all of NC.

We're proud that Community Food Lab got to play a part, but hats off to Carolina Creative Works for steering this big project through COVID!

Check out the public launch of the assessment report, below!

 The PTRC office continues to operate with restrictions due to COVID-19.  No visitors are allowed in the office without a prior appointment.  All staff are available via phone (336) 904-0300 or by email.  More

Farmers markets partnering with health systems to prescribe fresh food for people in need. Simple idea that needs many p...
04/16/2021
FARM RX - Food As Real Medicine Prescription Program

Farmers markets partnering with health systems to prescribe fresh food for people in need. Simple idea that needs many partners. In Athens they've been at the FarmRX program for five years, and according to their healthcare partner:

"Farm RX participation is the best indicator for patient success in their entire umbrella of healthcare services."

Food access can be part of a medical approach to health. Food is medicine.

Join Sarah McKinney as she speaks with Sarah Thurman, Market Manager and Monica Bledsoe, Farm RX Coordinator to learn about a really neat program delivered t...

We had a great afternoon walking the Kellam-Wyatt Farm site this afternoon with @wakegovparks @designworkshop & @cityofo...
04/15/2021

We had a great afternoon walking the Kellam-Wyatt Farm site this afternoon with @wakegovparks @designworkshop & @cityofoaksfoundation! We’re excited to be part of the farm’s master planning process, and can’t wait to see things take shape on this stunning site. 🐸

We are Finalist #2!Fingers crossed that our proposal on resilient regional food systems gets selected as the focus for t...
04/15/2021
2021 Sandbox Challenge

We are Finalist #2!
Fingers crossed that our proposal on resilient regional food systems gets selected as the focus for the 2021 Sandbox!
Thanks for the recognition, Triangle J Council of Governments!

The 2021 Sandbox Challenge crowdsourced some of the region's biggest economic recovery and resilience challenges. Now, the finalists are here, filled with potential for collaboration and innovative solutions. Learn about Finalist #1 and #2 below, and check back next week for Finalist #3. On April 28...

Crosspost from instagram.com/comm_food_lab -Last summer, we teamed up with Njathi Wa Kabui  to develop visions for the I...
04/07/2021

Crosspost from instagram.com/comm_food_lab -
Last summer, we teamed up with Njathi Wa Kabui to develop visions for the Ikumbi Center for Sustainability and Food Literacy in Kitengela, Kenya - here’s some highlights!

Regenerative farms weave through the agricultural education center, along with an international teaching kitchen, housing, a livestock barn, and gathering spaces. With a circular, holistic mindset on relationships, the campus pushes sustainability, community, empowerment, permaculture, regenerative agriculture, and the sociocultural expectations and implications of cuisine and identity.

Kabui’s passion, open-eyed energy and curiosity, and his clarity of purpose have inspired us, and we hope that these drawings help him push forward with this ambitious work - check him out chefkabui.com!

+Many thanks to @r.m.mcdonald for collaboration on some fantastic images!!

..
#communityfoodlab #chefkabui #kenya #regenerativeagriculture #sustainability #permaculture #foodliteracy #foodsovereignty #architecture #concept #design #render

So excited to share this event about digging deeper into urban-rural food and farm systems, featuring a past CFL teammat...
04/06/2021
ONLINE | Marshall Plan Part II: Farming Next Rural Trade Relationships

So excited to share this event about digging deeper into urban-rural food and farm systems, featuring a past CFL teammate, Emily Sloss!

Emily brings sharp insights to any food systems conversation, and you should check her out on April 9!

Join us for a continuation of our Other New Deals conversation surrounding a Marshall Plan for Rural America, started on February 26th. We are going to dig deeper into the pathways between urban-rural farming practices and how they contend with developing spatial contracts of our material realities....

Hear from us at the NCSU Sustainability Stewards’ 2021 Environmental Justice Symposium, April 5-9 2021!We’re honored to ...
03/31/2021

Hear from us at the NCSU Sustainability Stewards’ 2021 Environmental Justice Symposium, April 5-9 2021!

We’re honored to have our own Erin White and Mara Lowry be included among the fantastic speakers lined up to speak about food justice. Many thanks to the NCSU Stewards for putting this event together!

Learn more and RSVP - https://sites.google.com/ncsu.edu/ejs2021/

Super powerful op-ed from Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm -"The question is: Are you willing to carry on the seeds of so...
03/29/2021
Op-ed: An Afro-Indigenous Approach to Agriculture and Food Security | Civil Eats

Super powerful op-ed from Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm -

"The question is: Are you willing to carry on the seeds of sovereignty and fight for the rights of all people to carry on those seeds? Or will you let them die out? What will you do to weave a world anew?"

Society is finally waking up to the fact that we cannot have a healthy food system if we ignore racial justice or if we ignore the health of the land.

We're now on instagram! instagram.com/comm_food_labFollow us over there to see more of our work, our process, and to sta...
03/19/2021

We're now on instagram! instagram.com/comm_food_lab

Follow us over there to see more of our work, our process, and to stay connected!

"Seed libraries maintain stocks of seeds that the public can “check out” to plant in their gardens. Boxes stocked with p...
03/15/2021
This Teenager Helped Launch Seed Libraries in Every State - Modern Farmer

"Seed libraries maintain stocks of seeds that the public can “check out” to plant in their gardens. Boxes stocked with packets of seeds are often housed in public libraries, but businesses and homeowners have also started creating mini libraries in an effort to boost food gardening and seed saving while promoting food access and security."

During the pandemic, Alicia Serratos has spent countless hours assembling kits containing organic vegetable, herb and flower seeds, envelopes and plant

"Over the last several decades, Produce Prescription Programs have emerged as promising approach to improve health outco...
03/11/2021
Welcome! You are invited to join a webinar: Mainstreaming Produce Prescriptions: A Policy Strategy Report. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email about joining the webinar.

"Over the last several decades, Produce Prescription Programs have emerged as promising approach to improve health outcomes, reduce food insecurity, and manage long-term health care costs. These Programs enable health care providers to distribute benefits/vouchers for fruits and vegetables to patients living with, or at risk of, diet-related health conditions such as diabetes or hypertension. Despite mounting evidence that that Produce Prescription Programs can improve health outcomes by promoting affordable access to healthy foods, availability of these services remains limited in many areas of the country.

The Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation of Harvard Law School is excited to announce the launch of its new report analyzing current barriers and policy opportunities for expanding access to Produce Prescription Programs across the United States. This Web Forum will provide an overview of key findings from the report as well as provide insights from experts in the produce prescription field."

Over the last several decades, Produce Prescription Programs have emerged as promising approach to improve health outcomes, reduce food insecurity, and manage long-term health care costs. These Programs enable health care providers to distribute benefits/vouchers for fruits and vegetables to patient...

We're excited about agriculture in parks - check out our winter newsletter to find out why! https://mailchi.mp/6e9e52266...
03/08/2021
Winter 2021 Newsletter: Let's get agriculture in parks!

We're excited about agriculture in parks - check out our winter newsletter to find out why! https://mailchi.mp/6e9e522667f0/winter-2021-newsletter-lets-get-agriculture-in-parks

Many thanks to Wake County Government, Surface 678, and Design Workshop for images, support, and collaboration on some fantastic parks projects!

Food production is a natural fit into parks and recreation programming: diverse agriculture fosters healthy and active communities, and provides countless sustainability and education opportunities. However, it’s not as common as it could be. Imagine a fall day strolling through your favorite park...

Fantastic discussion on the opportunities and challenges for public urban agriculture!
03/03/2021
The Case For Edible Public Spaces in Cities - Modern Farmer

Fantastic discussion on the opportunities and challenges for public urban agriculture!

We’ve seen home gardening take off since the pandemic hit, as a popular way to pass the time and become more self-sufficient. More people have been

“Food has become at once an emblem and literal embodiment of the troubles around us. Activism can be a march, a boycott,...
02/26/2021
The Activists Working to Remake the Food System

“Food has become at once an emblem and literal embodiment of the troubles around us. Activism can be a march, a boycott, a campaign to knock on a million doors or even a handful of seeds: a future, staked in the earth. It can be voices in chorus and a rising consciousness that the way we eat not only reflects, often ignobly, our choices as a society but shapes them; and that we have the power to change those choices, and the way we live.”

They’re committed not just to securing better meals for everyone, but to dismantling the very structures that have long exploited both workers and consumers.

Loved hanging out with Rosa McDonald on our #weeklywalk , this time over in Durham where we were inspired by Briggs Ave ...
02/19/2021

Loved hanging out with Rosa McDonald on our #weeklywalk , this time over in Durham where we were inspired by Briggs Ave Community Garden (even in winter)! Greenhouse, nearly 100 beds, wash station, pollinator gardens, and it looks like an orchard in the works, too. Hats off to all involved and to NC Extension

"When you dig into these aspirations and the solutions that can help us achieve them, your mind starts to shift from des...
02/19/2021
From Crisis to Possibility: Five Aspirations for our Food System – Food Tank

"When you dig into these aspirations and the solutions that can help us achieve them, your mind starts to shift from despair at the state of the food system to excitement about the future."
Finding hope and thinking systemically - love it!

These five aspirations can act as guideposts as we build a better food system for the future that nourishes all people and the planet.

“It’s an opportunity to look at different systems for growing and developing and revitalizing a neighborhood and not jus...
02/17/2021
Food and Community Leading the Way to Revitalizing the Lower 9th Ward

“It’s an opportunity to look at different systems for growing and developing and revitalizing a neighborhood and not just big box stores or chain stores or fast food but investing in stakeholders in the neighborhood, the residents here who own businesses and may want to be a part of it.”
https://nextcity.org/daily/entry/food-and-community-leading-the-way-to-revitalizing-the-lower-9th-ward

Sankofa Community Development Corporation is about to break ground on a fresh-foods market for residents of New Orleans' Lower 9th Ward.

So excited to see this project move forward!! It's been fantastic to be part of this team making agriculture a reality i...
02/16/2021

So excited to see this project move forward!! It's been fantastic to be part of this team making agriculture a reality in Wake parks.

Looking forward to this webinar on Thursday!Panelists from the land grant system and a Hispanic Serving Ag Institution w...
02/08/2021
Building Relationships Across Higher Education Institutions to Address Racism in the Food System (webinar) – Northeast Extension Directors

Looking forward to this webinar on Thursday!

Panelists from the land grant system and a Hispanic Serving Ag Institution will provide brief remarks followed by a facilitated discussion across panelists and with the webinar audience about how to create a more sustainable and equitable food system future.

https://northeastextension.org/event/building-relationships-across-higher-education-institutions-to-address-racism-in-the-food-system-webinar/

Description: The land grant system includes the 1862 (white-led), 1890 (historically Black) and 1994 (Tribal/Indigenous) colleges and universities. These land grants, as well as Hispanic Serving Ag Colleges and Universities and other public/private higher education institutions all contribute to the...

"To support efforts to expand broadband access, Miller believes that the policymakers must do more. “We’ve been talking ...
02/04/2021
Broadband Expansion Benefits a More Resilient Food System – Food Tank

"To support efforts to expand broadband access, Miller believes that the policymakers must do more. “We’ve been talking about internet access for at least a decade,” Miller tells Food Tank, “and it’s time for the administration to be thinking about this as a ‘build back better’ effort and put some support…to make this a utility.”

In a recent panel discussion, experts explain what broadband expansion means for food security, the environment, and public health.

Local Food Systems Key to Healthy, Resilient, Equitable Communities
02/02/2021
Local Food Systems Key to Healthy, Resilient, Equitable Communities

Local Food Systems Key to Healthy, Resilient, Equitable Communities

As pressures on the U.S. agriculture and food businesses grow, governments across the country are experimenting with local and regional food systems models to better need their communities' needs.

"Diversification is important for reasons other than its own sake: if you want to obtain the right nutrients for the hum...
01/28/2021
Our Future Food Supply Depends on Endangered Wild Crops | Civil Eats

"Diversification is important for reasons other than its own sake: if you want to obtain the right nutrients for the human body, diversity is a good way of doing it. It’s a major pathway towards better health and nutrition. Our Native foods are amazing; they are also tasty. Have you heard of the pawpaw? Its conservation is happening mainly through a network of people who love them. They are yummy to eat, but the plant is also hard to commercialize because it matures quickly and the fruit is only edible for three days before it goes bad."
https://civileats.com/2021/01/25/our-future-food-supply-depends-on-endangered-wild-crops/

The lead author of a new study on the important role wild plants play in food crop diversity and climate mitigation calls for greater conservation efforts.

"A just and equitable food system requires a rethinking of the role of women as producers and consumers and a move from ...
01/21/2021
Why Transforming Our Food Systems Is a Feminist Issue

"A just and equitable food system requires a rethinking of the role of women as producers and consumers and a move from “what are women’s contributions in agriculture” toward “how can food and agricultural systems transform in ways that are equitable and that empower women”."

By Jemimah Njuki In countries where women are most marginalized, discriminated under the law and where gendered norms prevent women from owning property

Address

706 Mountford Ave
Raleigh, NC
27603

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Monday 9am - 5pm
Tuesday 9am - 5pm
Wednesday 9am - 5pm
Thursday 9am - 5pm
Friday 9am - 5pm

Telephone

(919) 995-0460

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Raleigh’s @Community Food Lab isn’t your average consulting firm.
Erin White de Community Food Lab está conectando comunidades por medio de la planificación de sistemas alimentarios, en los que estás comunidades se beneficien de sus cosechas entre sí. ¡Impresionante! #agrohack #agrohackpr #agroinnovacion
¡Todos los conferenciantes que te esperan en Agrohack 2019! ¡Qué emoción! ‌ - Erica Reyes Ocasio / Puerto Rico's Café Cola'o - Crystal Díaz / PRoduce - Ben Flanner / Brooklyn Grange - Daniel Kurzrock / ReGrained - Eric Carol / Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership - Erin White / Community Food Lab - Federico Hernández Picó / NextGen Pharma PR - Hon. Carlos Flores / Departamento de Agricultura - Jorge Pizarro Vidal / Agrónomos Por El Mundo - José Couvertier / AgroBeads - Lisa Curtis / Kuli Kuli - Lisette Pérez / Diva Farms - Lourdes Pérez / Producción de Vegetales y Hortalizas en Hidropónico - Luis Torres / Engine-4 Coworking Space - María Teresa Juan Urrutia / Urrutia Foods, Inc. - Mike Lee / Alpha Food Labs - Peter Vivoni / Agroservicios - Ramón Pagán / Caribe Drones - Reinaldo Caraballo / Apiarios Caraballo - Veny L. Martí / Martex Farms Puerto Rico - Wanda Otero / Vaca Negra ¡Te esperamos este sábado 6 de abril en el Centro de Convenciones de Puerto Rico! Para compra de boletos visitar: https://agrohackcon.com
¡Conoce cómo Erin White está ayudando la seguridad alimentaria! Fundador de Community Food Lab en North Carolina. Cuenta con un equipo de trabajo que tiene un enfoque claro: conectar comunidades por medio de diseños y proyectos que mejoren los sistemas alimentarios que actualmente poseen. Han ayudado a mejorar casos de hambruna en comunidades de North Carolina, al igual que, crearon una dispensa de comida localizada en un hospital para combatir el problema de la seguridad alimentaria que tanto nos afecta, entre otros magníficos proyectos. ¡Ven y aprende del tema de seguridad alimentaria y la planificación de soluciones para la misma en Agrohack 2019! Tienes una cita con nosotros este sábado 6 de abril en el Centro de Convenciones de Puerto Rico. Para más información y boletos visita: https://agrohackcon.com
Today just keeps getting better! Happy Friday Facebook! IEI is excited to share a sneak peek into our ReCONNECT Rural and Urban Community Cohort. These amazing people will join us on Feb. 11 for our ReCONNECT Rural and Urban Forum here in Raleigh. So take a moment, view this video then make the choice to join us on Feb 11. Registration closes soon so hurry. ReConnectNC.org Community Food Lab Piedmont Triad Partnership Outdoor Gear Builders of WNC STEM Learning Ecosystems Transylvania County
Erin White (M.Arch '11) of Community Food Lab joins the Institute for Emerging Issues' podcast to talk about designing strategies to optimize food systems in the Triangle. #ThinkAndDo
Thank you Community Food Lab for INDULGING with us during your Race Equity Training for Durham Food System Project On 1/11/19... Thank you for doing the important work in the community and educating us about the various farmers that you support. It was wonderful to find about thr Durham ofdice and we look forward to utilizing more North Carolina grown produce. .... .... Have you INDULGED yet? Contact us today for your customized catering menu for festivals and events. Indulge-Catering.com #IndulgeCateringNC #catering #DurhamNC #RaleighNC #carync #personalchefs #healthyeating #TravelingChefs #foodie #Corporatecatering #womenchefs #blackchefnetwork #kitchentakeover #foodieofdurham #desserts #smallbusiness #foodieofraleigh #Durhamchefs #TheBullsOfDurham #bestofthebull #bitesofthebull #privatechef #DiscoverDurham #GDCC #communityfoodlab
I'm so excited about what you are doing!
"Learning from Limits: Food Processing at Bull City Cool" is a report that is written for local food organizations, project developers, and food system builders. It is at once a case study in launching a particular kind of food hub; a set of lessons learned around small food processing enterprises; and a call to embrace risk and not shy from failure. Read more: http://goo.gl/lQTM55 Great report Community Food Lab!
We look forward to hearing from Erin White of Community Food Lab this Tuesday at 8pm ET. Here's a synopsis of his presentation: In many ways, the systems we rely on to get food onto our tables, from farms to distribution infrastructure to food waste, are failing us. Our food systems need new solutions. Design thinking, as seen in the work of Community Food Lab, offers an approach for innovation in solving these complex problems. This talk will use thinking and projects of Community Food Lab to describe the broad problems facing us, look at design thinking as a key part of solutions, and explore creative responses to food and community problems.
Thanks so much for presenting at our Capital Group Sierra Club meeting this past Thursday. So excited to learn more about your business and process! We are very fortunate to have you in our area.
Thanks to Community Food Lab for organizing this effort. So glad we got to participate!