UACES Facebook Arkansas Local Foods and COVID-19 Resources
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Local Foods & COVID-19 Resources

 
As we navigate the challenges of COVID-19, local farms and food businesses* are working hard to provide safe food to their consumers. Our food system is strong and dynamic. As they fulfill this essential role, they face unique challenges which could change at any moment.
 
Our team has created programs and resources to stay connected with our local farms and food businesses. The Local, Regional and Safe Foods team is here to:
  • share research based information,
  • help clarify rules, regulations and policies,
  • provide an opportunity for learning from others during the COVID-19 pandemic.
See below for a list of these programs and resources.
 

*Food Businesses include farm stands, farmers markets, community supported agriculture (CSA) programs, restaurants, small grocers, food trucks, Arkansas-made food manufacturers, and cottage food producers


Fall Farm Activity Guidance & COVID-19View Fall Farm Activity Guidelines & COVID-19 Resource

Each fall, many farms host a variety of activities including corn mazes, wagon rides, and pumpkin patches. These beloved activities generate a large percentage of annual income for farms. The coronavirus has caused some hesitation, yet with preparation farms can remain open while managing risk.
 
Our team at Extension has created a resource on how to safely operate these activities this season. The Fall Farm Activity Guidelines & COVID-19, a collaboration with the Arkansas Agritourism Association and the Arkansas Department of Health , includes tips such as:
 
  • Providing all guests with hand sanitizer
  • Disinfecting all commonly-touched surfaces
  • Not allowing access to individuals who have been ill or in contact with an ill person within the past 14 days
  • Communicating your COVID-19 policies to guests via website, social media, and signage at your farm
  • Distributing masks or face coverings - be creative and add your farm name or logo!
For more information, please contact Rip Weaver at rweaver@uaex.edu.

Local Foods Open Space DiscussionsView Discussion Recordings

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, our team hosted periodic discussions with the local foods community in Arkansas. Participants represented many stakeholder groups of our local food systems:
  • Farms, farmers markets, CSA's,
  • small grocers, cottage food businesses, food stands
  • farm-to-school programs,
  • restaurants, pop-up food shops, and other food businesses.
The discussions include short presentations on a timely topic followed by a Q&A. Click the "View Recordings" link below to browse the topics. Future discussions may arise as necessary, so please check back for more information.
 

Missed a previous discussion? Click the button below.

View Discussion Recordings


Arkansas COVID-19 Food Access MapView AR COVID-19 Food Access Map

Though the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many aspects of life to change, finding local foods should not be a barrier. Farmers markets, farm stands, food pantries, and school meal programs are still providing local foods to Arkansans.
 
View the Arkansas COVID-19 Food Access Map for information on where to find local foods.

 

View AR COVID-19 Food Access Map 

Want to add a food resource to the map? Fill out this form


Other Resources by Local Foods Topic

Besides preventing the transmission of coronavirus, farms and food businesses are navigating workforce concerns, shifting markets, and production planning. We would like to share a few updates and resources to keep you informed and prepared.

Below are recommendations for all farms and food businesses followed by ones for specific food businesses.


Please reach out with questions to Extension's Local, Regional, & Safe Foods team members. 

UAEX Local, Regional & Safe Foods

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