Our Mission



The mission of the Grand Traverse Foodshed Alliance (GTFA) is to strengthen local food markets in the Grand Traverse region with the goal of increasing access to, demand for, and consumption of safe, healthy local food, and improving the viability of small scale farms, for the benefit of consumers, farmers, and the community as a whole. These goals address the underlying public health, economic, environmental, and social challenges related to (1) the lack of access to healthy food in underserved areas, and (2) developing a more resilient small and mid-sized farm economy to promote economic development, particularly in economically challenged rural areas.

Summary of Activities:

To create a good food system, the GTFA will approach the regional food system components as a system that needs to work together. It will strive to build relationships among farmers, organizations that purchase food, and consumers across the region; provide purposeful educational programming; and convene stakeholders to assist in bringing nourishing food to consumers across the area, especially those most vulnerable to inadequate nutritional diets, and promote job creation and entrepreneurism for the benefit of the entire community.

Practical Applications:

In order to accomplish this mission, the GTFA operates the Grand Traverse Food Innovation Hub in cooperation with several food system partners.  The Food Innovation Hub provides 12,000 square feet of optimized food production facilities, along with shared meetings and classroom space.

The Food Innovation Hub is located at 1610 Barlow Street in Traverse City and is housed in a building designed and managed by Cherry Capital Foods.  The facility offers 10 leasable spaces designed to serve the specific needs of food manufacturing and production.  Tenants are offered below-market rates and the option to interact with other like-minded food businesses. Each business also has the option to collaborate with Cherry Capital Foods to store and distribute finished food products through the doors of the collocated warehouse distribution facility.

To see a facility plan and inquire about available space, go to our leasing section of this website.

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