Hartford S.H.E.L.F. – Sustainable, Healthy, Economical and Local Foods

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In this project, students investigated the informational barriers that Hartford residents face when trying to access sustainable, healthy, economical, and locally-grown foods. Students conducted and implemented interviews with farmers, residents, and experts in the Hartford food system about the struggles these groups encounter providing and/or accessing local foods. Cost followed by nutritional value were the most highly-considered factors for Hartford residents when making their food choices, and more than half of the residents surveyed said they were likely to consider both locally-grown and environmental impact when shopping. Students found that while residents mainly used the internet to get information about healthy foods and recipes, they did not use it as commonly for information about where to shop. They concluded that there is not a consistent and/or reliable source for residents to determine what is being sold at farmers markets by day and suggested an internet intervention by publicizing a coordinated Twitter feed.


Community partner: Office of Sustainability, City of Hartford