If I’m right, we are at the very tip top of the iceberg. A recent study by the USDA found that “local” foods represented $5 billion in food sales in 2008. The media reported that number to rise to $7 billion this year (although I don't know where they came up with that since it's not in the report). Sounds like a lot right!? WRONG! That’s only about 0.5% of total food sales! Half a percent. That’s basically nothing if you round down. Now tell me that we’re not at the tip of the iceberg. We got a LONG way to go!
I frequently have to step back and remind myself that the recent growth in small farm production hasn’t even made a dent in the industrial food complex. If you’re ingrained in the alternative ag movement and you read the blogs and participate in the community you probably think everyone else does too. But they don't! We’re only a tiny fraction, people. I forget that pretty much everyone outside of my little circle of foodies thinks I'm a total weirdo! The idea of direct marketing and ‘knowing your farmer’ is far, far away from being commonplace. The interest level is only starting to grow.