IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

From Agriculture to Manufacturing and Back: Old Industrial Zones and Prospective Incubators for Local Food Systems


  • Vaiknoras, Kate
  • Boys, Kathryn A.
  • Donovan, Patricia


There is significant competition for local and state resources to support development of infrastructure for the local foods movement. These resources, however, are frequently allocated to locations which have political persuasion rather than which are necessarily good locations for food system development. As such, limited local food system (LFS) resources are not efficiently allocated. With the intent to offer an improved strategy for allocating local food system resources, this study proposes a novel approach to identifying areas which would be appropriate for local food system development. Successful local food systems bring buyers and supply of these products together in place. Through the use of GIS mapping, locations which have the soil, water, environmental characteristics, and labor inputs needed to be agriculturally productive can be identified. Overlaying this with areas which have sufficient nearby demand potential offers important insight into where LFS systems might flourish. This study examines old industrial zones (OIZ) in South Carolina as an instructive case example. There is interest in repurposing abandoned textile mill areas; local food system hubs have been suggested as a possible use. An inventory of 97 potential sites were identified and examined as to their suitability for local foods production. Of these, only 11 sites (11.3%) were found to be well suited to both the production of agricultural produce and were sufficiently close to sources of potential demand to be worth LFS development efforts. Results from this approach are likely to be useful to areas who are suitable candidates for a LFS but who have not have not been successful in generating sufficient support for its development.

Suggested Citation

  • Vaiknoras, Kate & Boys, Kathryn A. & Donovan, Patricia, 2013. "From Agriculture to Manufacturing and Back: Old Industrial Zones and Prospective Incubators for Local Food Systems," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150287, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:150287

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    Community/Rural/Urban Development; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:150287. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.