Network Analysis of Local Food in California: A Study of Farmers’ Markets in Los Angeles and their Farm Supply Chains

Luke Drake

This paper examines the geography of local food through a spatial analysis of farms and farmers’ markets. It draws on two themes in the geo-graphical literature on local food, which focus on territorial and prox-imity definitions on one hand and on relationality on the other. Through GIS analysis, this paper explores spatial patterns of ninety-one farmers’ markets in Los Angeles County, California, USA; spatial patterns of 282 farms that supplied a sample of thirty-three markets; and intra-urban patterns of those supply chains. The results show an uneven geography of farms across California that supplied the sampled markets, but also show that farms travel just as far to markets in working-class neighborhoods as to wealthier neighborhoods. Conclusions explain how integrating territorial and relational conceptions of local food provide insights into the complex spatiality of production and consumption, and how local food can be understood as an interdependence between places.

Suggested citation

Drake, Luke. 2019. Network analysis of local food in California: A study of farmers’ markets in Los Angeles and their farm supply chains. California Geographer 58: 1-20.