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Cooperative principles at work in Indigenous foodsystems in the U.S.

Green field at sunset.

Across Turtle Island, Native communities are joining the Indigenous food sovereignty movement to reclaim their foodsystems, cultural practices, and economies. Cooperatives are a particularly viable organizational structure for these projects since Indigenous foodsystems historically depended on community cooperation and collective use of land and other resources. This paper is interested in the ways Native foodway initiatives are building producer cooperatives in the US as a method towards food sovereignty.

The two authors of the article, “Relative to the landscape: Producer cooperatives in native food sovereignty initiatives,” published in the Journal of Co-operative Organization and Management are both members of the Civil Society & Community Research department: Becca Dower, PhD student and Jennifer Gaddis, Jane Rafferty Thiele Faculty Fellow & Associate Professor.

In Summer 2017 Becca Dower began a project working with the Intertribal Agriculture Council (IAC) develop a tribally-supported agriculture program—or TSA—to distributes Native American produced goods to Native American communities. During this time, she conducted preliminary research with funding from the School of Human Ecology Summer Time Academic Research (STAR) Award, supported by the Catherine K. Sheehan Fund.

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Read the full article at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2213297X21000197