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Nationwide Secondary Data Sets

The USDA Food Environment Atlas provides statistics on three broad categories of the food environment: food access, health and physical activity, and socioeconomic characteristics.

The USDA Atlas of Rural and Small-Town America provides statistics on four broad categories of socioeconomic factors: Demographics, Jobs, Agriculture, and County Classifications.

Community Commons provides a GIS mapping tool widgets for your own website, resources, and forums where you can share your activities and learn from others.  The indicators are categorized into 19 areas, including: Demographics, Economic/Income, Food Environment, and Health.

Community Commons’ Make a Map tool contains public data that can be mapped, including some data captured by the US Census of Agriculture.

Community Commons’ Build a Report tool automatically generates reports of each area that includes a map defining the selected area and the statistics for each of the selected indicators along with additional related statistics.

US Census of Agriculture tables compiled by the US Department of Agriculture include information on agricultural products grown and sold by county in Colorado, demographics such as principal farmer age, farm size, and ownership.

The U.S. Food Market Estimator, hosted by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, can be employed by producers to estimate potential demand by county for over 200 different food products, including dairy, meat, fruit, vegetable, and grain products. Various market factors are available for selection including units, market target, and timeframe.

The U.S. Census American Community Survey (ACS) contains a plethora of food assessment-related information. Using the geographic boundaries of your community food assessment, you can pull down key socioeconomic and demographic characteristics of residents. In addition to data in table format, the ACS presents some indicators in narrative and graphs.

USDA Economic Research Service reports the Food Security Scale and the Child Food Insecurity at the state level and the latest report can be found under Publications

Food and Fitness for Children and Families: A Rapid Assessment Tool is intended to guide users in data collection regarding the resources, challenges, attitudes, and goals of those impacted by childhood obesity. The methods include observation, interviewing, and focus groups. It is considered a “rapid” assessment tool because it is tailored to the language, social environment, and cultures of the users and respondents.  Presently, users may register and download the “Food & Fitness RAP Manual” online.

Colorado Secondary Data Sets

Colorado MarketMaker is an online marketing resource to link producers with processors, retailers, schools, consumers, and other food supply chain participants. The database is highly searchable.  For example, you can search by types of businesses or types of products and the geographical location (state or counties).

Colorado Health Indicators include county, regional and state level data on a variety of health, environmental and social topics.

The Colorado Health Information Dataset (CoHID) provides access to local-level health data on health behaviors and preventive health practices.

Colorado Environmental Public Health Tracking permits you to search by topic, county, and year and create custom charts, maps, and tables.

Colorado Health Institute has an information clearinghouse for national, state and local data. Health-based data queries can be conducted by geography (county) and topics.

The Colorado State Demography Office is the primary state agency for population and demographic information.  The office makes the data publicly available on their website, answers requests for economic and demographic data and provides training workshops on accessing and using the data.

The Colorado Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) can provide some initial relevant information about the health of your community, including lifestyles and behaviors related to the leading causes of mortality and morbidity.

Colorado Farmers Market Association’s website allows users to find information on farmers markets in Colorado, including hours, location, and whether they accept SNAP.

Feeding America: Colorado Food Banks locates food banks in Colorado and provides information on the food distributed from each facility.  It also lists state statistics related to food insecurity.

Fresh Produce and Meat Market Price Reports have been compiled weekly by CSU Extension’s Boulder County Office for market pricing of fresh produce and meat for Boulder, South Pearl Denver, Drake Fort Collins, Larimer Fort Collins, Greeley, and Longmont Farmers’ Markets.  Use the reports to compare local prices to prices throughout the state.

Nationwide Primary Data Collection Tools

The Farmworker Food Security Survey is available in both Spanish and English to assess the food security of farmworkers, based on whether respondents make sufficient wages to afford healthy food, access to food, and degree of starvation.

Cool Climate Small Business Footprint Calculator allows businesses to calculate total carbon footprint for facilities, including food manufacturing, and transportation.   The calculator also compares output to similar organizations and offers recommendations to lower the carbon footprint.

Food Waste Management Cost Calculator allows individuals, organizations, or communities to compare cost estimates and environmental impacts for disposal versus recycling or reuse of food waste.

Healthy Communities Tool Kit Resource contains numerous data collection instruments from the Washington State Nutrition and Physical Activity Plan used for measuring access to healthy foods in stores, assessing farmers markets, and community gardens.

Food Security Survey Tools provided by the USDA Economic Research Service will allow researchers to adapt the module to their survey context, edit and code responses, and calculate household summary measures of food security for adults and youth, including a Spanish translation.

UC Davis Evaluation Tools from the University of California, Davis, Center for Advanced Study in Nutrition and Social Marketing website measure the nutrition environment in schools and child care settings.

The USDA Community Food Security Assessment Toolkit includes a set of standardized measurement tools for assessing various aspects of community food security. It includes a general guide to community assessment and focused materials for examining six basic assessment components related to community food security.

The NE Iowa Local Food Producer Survey was used by the Northeast Iowa Food and Farm Coalition along with a consumer survey to bridge producer/consumer information, attain a better understanding of the current Iowa local food system, and identify growing opportunities for the future.

What’s Cooking in Your Food System? A Guide to Community Food Assessment is aimed at informing and supporting the development of Community Food Assessments as a tool for increasing community food security and creating positive change. This Guide is intended to be used with the Community Food Security Assessment Toolkit.

Colorado Primary Data Collection Tools

Colorado Food Assessments: Findings from Community-wide Surveys, a document provided by LiveWell Colorado, presents the findings of resident surveys conducted in four Colorado communities to inform community food assessments in those counties.

LiveWell Longmont Community Food Assessment was distributed to community members to determine how respondents choose retailers and foods, and their attitudes toward changing access to healthy foods. Adherence to food safety measures was also assessed.

Live Well Wheat Ridge Access to Healthy Foods Assessment included a survey from the Wheat Ridge Access to Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Task Force and LiveWell Wheat Ridge that gathered information about fresh fruit and vegetable access in the food environment, including different store types, community gardens, and farmers markets.

Neighborhood Environment and Health Survey is a survey by the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and Gardens for Growing Healthy Communities that collected information about people’s perceptions and experiences in their neighborhood including social capital measures, gardening activities including backyard and community gardening, physical activity, general health, food and nutrition, food environment, and demographics.

Food Assessment Reports

The Pueblo Food System Assessment, conducted by The Pueblo City and County Health Department, is a comprehensive review of the food and agriculture systems of Pueblo County aimed at addressing issues of healthy food access and food security.

The Northwest Colorado Food Assessment was initiated by LiveWell Northwest in 2011 in order to inform and advance its strategic goal to increase availability and consumption of affordable fruits and vegetables in Routt County.

Northern Colorado Regional Food Assessment provides secondary baseline data from the US Census of Agriculture and other public sources for the regional food system in Boulder, Larimer and Weld counties. They also include Guidance for Conducting a Food Assessment and the survey used: October Open House Questionnaire

San Miguel Community Food Assessment was conducted by the New Community Coalition and included surveys to provide baseline information about the production and consumption of food in the San Miguel Watershed that will be used to develop a plan for an improved food system that benefits both consumers and producers:

La Plata County Food Assessment, completed by the Growing Partners of Southwest Colorado, assessed food security in La Plata County.  The final report along with appendices of data collected through an extensive primary data collection effort can be viewed online. The tool kit of primary data collection instruments includes:

Colorado Agriculture Public Attitude Report collected data regarding Colorado residents’ perspectives on agriculture.  Questions concern respondents’ experience with farming/ranching, familiarity with CO produce, understanding of the economic impact of local agriculture, behaviors regarding purchase of local food, and attitudes toward preserving land for agriculture.

Adams County Food Security Assessment was conducted to gain a better understanding of food security issues and challenges faced by the low income population of Adams County; uncover trends that may indicate the growth in need for food assistance; gain a better understanding of the complex food assistance systems; identify resources and gaps in food assistance; and develop an information base.

Local Food Prospectus for the Tri-State Region, a study on Tri-State local food, explores how Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin’s changing food markets may create new economic opportunities for the region.