Regional food planning

why create a regional food plan?

Local food efforts, by definition, tend to focus on the small-scale. But creating lasting change to a food system requires stakeholders at a regional level working together to solve complex issues. That's why LEAP is now growing a "network of networks" to create a map for moving forward.

Introducing the Roanoke Regional Food System Partnership
The RFSP is a multi-stakeholder network that has as its mission:

here are a few of the stakeholders

For more information contact Maureen McGonagle at

how did we get here?

Roanoke Valley Local Food Plan
LEAP has served on a steering committee for the Roanoke Valley-Allegany Regional Commission in order develop a Local Food Plan that is equitable and works for everyone in our region. Read the 2020 Roanoke Valley Local Food Plan here.

“Roanoke Local” Regional Food & Agriculture Report
In December 2016, LEAP compiled and presented this report, an overview of the current state of the local food system in the Roanoke food-shed, for the Roanoke Valley-Allegany Regional Commission (RVARC) Regional and Local Food Planning Committee.
– View the “Roanoke Local” Regional Food & Agriculture Report, by Liza Dobson

Farmer Listening Sessions
In February and March, 2017, LEAP hosted a series of three Farmer Listening Sessions around the Roanoke Valley and surrounding region, with Virginia Cooperative Extension agriculture and natural resources agents serving as facilitators. The sessions were recorded, and audio/video and transcripts of each session are available for review (Bonsack, Rocky Mount, Christiansburg). Attendees identified their greatest challenges to farm viability, and each group then collectively narrowed down the most pressing needs to a list of three, which were discussed in depth. We have attempted to boil down the roughly six hours of conversation into a coherent document, organized by perceived challenges and proposed solution(s) to each obstacle.

View the Farmer Listening Sessions Findings Report or the Executive Summary.Students from Roanoke College’s Environmental Communications class attended the Farmer Listening Sessions and produced a short video featuring local farmers from two Montvale farms: Goose Creek Gardens and Bramble Hollow Farms.

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