Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Open Access)


Colby College. Anthropology Dept.


David L. Nugent

Second Advisor

Mary Beth Mills


The idea for this thesis emerged out of my experience last summer, when I worked for an organization in Ellsworth, Maine called the Locally Grown Foods Project. The purpose of this organization is to facilitate the relationship between farmers and restaurants or other small institutions in the Bar Harbor area. After talking with one farmer at length about his experiences working with local institutions, I became curious about the growing institutional market for locally grown foods. I began to wonder what larger institutions throughout the state were doing to support local farmers and why they were interested in purchasing local items. My boss, Ron Poitras, suggested that I focus on Colby, Bates, and Bowdoin since he knew that like many other small, private colleges throughout the country, these schools were actively involved, albeit on varying levels, with local farmers. As a Maine resident and Colby student with a brother at Bates, this seemed like a logical focus and I quickly became intrigued by this topic. Thus, at the end of last summer, I began collecting information on farm-to-college projects throughout the country and in Maine to gain a better understanding of the barriers and benefits that are specific to Maine schools and Maine farmers.


Maine Farms, Maine Colleges, symbolism, reality, local purchase, Colby, Bates, Bowdoin, fieldwork

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Anthropology Commons