Southeast Foodshed Planning Initiative

The Southeast Foodshed Planning Initiative, (SEFPI) managed by the Southeast Minnesota Regional Sustainable Development Partnership of the University of Minnesota, "is a means to engage the research and outreach capabilities of our land-grant institution in a collaborative way that responds to issues articulated by the citizens, in an effort to 'scale up' the impact on our food system."

The goals of the SEFPI were formulated by a diverse base of citizens who, via numerous events and meetings, articulated a set of priorities to create some level of regional self-reliance in our food system. Meaningful, broad-based research is one way to start 'connecting the dots' of over ten years of small- scale, localized projects that have not, as yet, shifted our overall food environment." (2009 SEFPI Brochure et. al.)

The Center for Rural Design's role has entailed mapping and illustration design as part of the Foodshed Analysis Team. Effort has focused on determining the spatial extent, the appropriate data for the foodshed analysis, the methodology for the foodshed analysis, and developing a preliminary estimate of the current capacity for local food production to meet the need for food in Southeast Minnesota.