NC 10% Campaign Surpasses $50 Million Milestone, Becomes a National Model
From the September 2013 e-Newsletter
The NC 10% Campaign, a CEFS initiative that encourages all North Carolina individuals and businesses to spend 10% of their existing food dollars on locally-produced food, has hit a big milestone. The Campaign, which counts over 6700 individuals and 870 businesses among its supporters, has tracked more than $50 million in local foods purchases since July 2010.
"Reaching this goal is a testament to the commitment of our partners to source and purchase North Carolina foods whenever possible," says Teisha Wymore, outgoing State Coordinator of the NC 10% Campaign.*
The Campaign, which recently marked its third anniversary, aims to support a local food economy in North Carolina. Supporters sign up on the campaign's website, nc10percent.com, and record their local foods purchases each week. The Campaign's database aggregates purchases and allows individuals and business partners to track their progress over time. The campaign has social media, educational, and community-building components as well.
The NC 10% Campaign has been so successful that other states are beginning to use it as a model for local food initiatives in their own regions. This summer, Connecticut launched its own 10% Campaign, organized by buyCTgrown.com, a collaboration of the Connecticut Northeast Organic Farming Association, CitySeed, the Connecticut Department of Agriculture, UConn Extension, and Connecticut Farm Bureau Association.
They were particularly drawn to the functionality of the NC 10% Campaign's database. "This online tracking program will be very valuable to us in Connecticut because it will put a spotlight on and provide a standardized approach to collecting information about how much our residents and businesses are spending on locally grown products," says Jiff Martin, UConn Extension's Sustainable Food Systems Educator.
Other states are in varying stages of developing their own 10% Campaigns, as well. Efforts are underway in both Michigan and South Carolina. "Many states are interested in adopting an initiative for supporting local foods and farms, and they are looking to us as a successful model. We're proud of our program and excited about the successful relationships we've built with other states looking to adopt a local foods initiative," said Wymore.
Funded by the Golden LEAF Foundation, the NC 10% Campaign works with the NC Cooperative Extension Service in all 100 North Carolina counties and with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. For more information please see nc10percent.com.
*Outgoing State Coordinator of the NC 10% Campaign, Teisha Wymore, has recently transitioned to a new role at CEFS: the Farm to Fork Action Plan Operations Manager. Robyn Stout is now the interim State Coordinator of the NC 10% Campaign and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.