The Iowa Food Policy Council: a case study

Date
2012-01-01
Authors
Dean, John
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Abstract

While legislative and administrative decisions are made by government entities, food policy councils (FPCs) will often recommend and implement food policy decisions at the local and regional levels. When created, the Iowa Food Policy Council (IFPC) became the second state-wide FPC in existence. With Iowa being a leader in the production of corn, soybeans and pork for domestic consumption and export, the state's importance in the national-- as well global-- food production system cannot be underestimated (U.S. Department of Agriculture 2007). The Iowa Food Policy Council offered a voice for small-scale producers, food justice advocates, and others who represented an alternative to the typical commodity-dominated agricultural interests of Iowa. Through a single-case study methodology using in-depth interviews and content analysis, this analysis examines the challenges and opportunities experienced by the IFPC from its beginning to its collapse. The results of this research demonstrate the significance of establishing a legacy of convening that may continue without a formal structure. This research also questions why stakeholders become involved and, just as importantly, why they stay involved. Existing FPC literature does not include a single-case study methodology; this analysis will provide a foundation for future FPC research.

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food policy, food policy councils, food systems, organization legacy, single-case study, State of Iowa
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