Encyclopedia of Organic, Sustainable, and Local Food
by Leslie A. Duram, Editor
November 2009, 462pp, 7x10
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-0-313-35963-7
$98, £73, 82€, A140
eBook Available: 978-0-313-35964-4
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

In 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama established an organic vegetable garden at the White House, reflecting the impact and popularity of the “green” food movement at even the highest levels. Her action is no surprise. Global sales of organic products topped $23 billion in 2008 and have been growing 20 to 25 percent annually for the past decade.

A comprehensive compilation of entries illuminates the key trends, activities, and themes in organic, sustainable, and local food, covering consumers, organizations, farming, policies, and much more.

The Encyclopedia of Organic, Sustainable, and Local Food pulls together a fascinating array of diverse, interdisciplinary topics to provide a thorough overview of our current alternative food system. With increasing attention focused on organic and local food, many people are attracted to these sustainable food choices. Yet despite its popularity, there are misconceptions and a general lack of understanding about organic and local food.

This encyclopedia illuminates social concerns, economic trends, policy influences, and ecological terms to provide a comprehensive overview. Contributions from expert authors from government agencies, research universities, and private organizations provide key information on each of these relevant topics. Eating is a basic human activity, yet many people do not know where their food comes from. This book helps readers fill the gap between the trendy and the factual.


  • 150 comprehensive, A–Z entries cover all aspects of organic food and farming, local food production and consumption, and sustainable food initiatives
  • A chronology of the years 1860–2009 includes over 40 events, detailing the history and evolution of organic and local food
  • 30 photographs depict current themes in sustainable farming and organic/local food
  • A bibliography lists key references for readers who wish to follow up on a specific theme
Leslie A. Duram is professor and chair of the department of geography and environmental resources at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. Her published works include Good Growing: Why Organic Farming Works as well as numerous research articles. She won the National Council for Geographic Education College Teaching Award (2006) and the Association of American Geographers Hart Research Award (2008). Duram is also a Fulbright Scholar conducting research on local food networks in Ireland for the 2009–2010 academic year.


"This important book encourages readers to look to the past as well as the future by getting involved in their local food community. A wonderful addition to a range of collections."—Library Journal, February 15, 2010

"For students and general readers, Duram (geography and environmental resources, Southern Illinois U. Carbondale) offers an encyclopedia that contains about 140 entries by scholars, government experts, and activists on all aspects of organic food and farming, local food production and consumption, and sustainable food initiatives, including farmers markets, health issues, economic terms, organic big business, USDA organic standards, food labels, and organizations. Topics relate to activism, movements, and community aspects like animal welfare and vegetarian diets; agriculture subjects such as organic milk, bees, genetically engineered crops, pesticides, and water quality; animals, fish, and seafood; business and economic issues like cloning, fast food, and globalization; education; environmental issues; government agencies and policies; health; and theories and concepts like free trade."—Reference & Research Book News, February 1, 2010

"The encyclopedia is both easy to read and comprehend and well positioned costwise to compete in the public library market as well as providing great information for the undergraduate. Recommended for most libraries." —Booklist, March 15, 2010

"Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers."—Choice, May 1, 2010

"This informative guide is recommended for academic and public libraries."—Lawrence Looks at Books, February 1, 2010

"Recommended for high school, public, and undergraduate library collections."—Reference & User Services Quarterly, September 1, 2010

"… polished production, giving a good overview and taking a broad perspective to incorporate issues such as sustainability and local food."—Reference Reviews, December 1, 2010
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