For Part 1, Economic Analysis, the team chose Dr. Steven Miller and Dr. John Mann of Michigan State University’s Product Center, Center for Economic Analysis, to develop an input/output model to provide a baseline for the capacity of the inner ring of the Chicago foodshed to supply the Chicago market with sustainably produced local produce and grains, while providing economic benefits.
The study had three goals:
1. Develop cost-effective, credible, and replicable economic measures of Chicago’s local food system.
2. Understand the economic implications of production and consumption patterns of the Study Region’s local foods and the potential impacts of changes on the local food system.
3. Identify policies to help the local food system evolve.
The study examined a market basket of fifteen vegetables and fruits commonly sold locally in the Study Region, as well as two grains. The simulations followed moderate and aggressive growth scenarios, where moderate growth assumed a 10% increase in local food purchases, and aggressive growth assumed a 25% increase.