Community Food Systems Conference 2017

  December 5 - 7, 2017 - Boston Park Plaza Hotel

Exploring the intersection of food security, social justice, and sustainable agriculture

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Register Here! Registration closes Nov 17th. NOTE: Early bird registration ended 10/10/17.




Thank you to our sponsors:





Exhibitors & Additional Supporters:


Food Solutions New England   |   Progressive Asset Management - Boston  |  North American Food Systems Network  |  Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development  |  Agricultural Justice Project  |  Farm to Institution New England  |  Chelsea Green Publishing  |  Gaining Ground  |  The Livestock Institute of Southern New England | Univeristy of California Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology Apprenticeship Program

Conference Overview

New Entry Sustainable Farming Project's Community Food Systems Conference will address common underlying themes between food security, social justice and sustainable agriculture including obstacles in urban and rural environments and fostering community empowerment to create and sustain resilient local food systems. 

We will provide space for conversations around promoting, facilitating, and supporting self-reliance; breaking down barriers to racial justice; connecting communities to their food sources; and impacting communities at the local and regional level through sustainable food production.

The conference will bring together leaders in, and advocates of, food security, sustainable agriculture and social justice movements to discuss their range of perspectives, how these areas overlap, and how to support one another’s work.

We expect 500 attendees from the fields of community food security, social justice and sustainable agriculture. Early bird discount and scholarship opportunities will also be available.

Conference Highlights

  • Keynote and plenary sessions on food security, social justice and sustainable agriculture.
    • Keynote speaker (pictured below, left): Winona LaDuke, award-winning environmentalist and political activist working and residing on the White Earth reservation in Northern Minnesota; founder of White Earth Land Recovery Project and the Indigenous Women’s Network; and active author and speaker
    • Plenary panelists (pictured below):
      • Malik Yakini, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network
      • Aleya Fraser, Farmer & Educator, founder of Black Dirt Farm Collective
      • Suzanne Adely, Northeast Regional  Organizer at Food Chain Workers Alliance, a lead organization of the HEAL Food Alliance
      • Moderated by Andy Fisher, Co-Founder of the Community Food Security Coalition and author of Big Hunger

 Winona LaDuke


Pictured left to right:   Malik Yakini  |  Aleya Fraser  |  Suzanne Adely  |  Andy Fisher

  • 50+ workshops, lightning talks, and networking sessions focused on food justice, policy, best practices, experiential education, sustainability, economic development, building community, and promoting access to healthy food in underserved communities.
  • Exhibit hall for leading non-profit, academic, business and government organizations in the community food field.
  • Field trips to see community food systems work in action at various Boston-area organizations.
  • Pre-conference trainings and forums geared toward targeted audiences for delving deeper into specific food systems work.
  • Meals featuring locally-grown foods and a reception at Boston Public Market.

Workshop presentations will span the following topics:

Community Partnerships / Farm-to-All / Food Justice / Movement Building / Social Enterprise / Policy / Measuring Impacts / Labor / Youth

Conference Agenda  |  Pre-Conference Sessions & Field Trips  |  Workshop Lineup  |  Reception Information



There are opportunities to support the 2017 Community Food Systems Conference! Please click here for details.

Our sponsors help to keep this conference accessible and affordable. For further sponsorship information, please see our Sponsorship page. Please contact Kristen Irvin with any sponsorship questions at or 978-654-6745 xt.109.


A limited number of scholarships are available for individuals who would like to attend the conference but need financial assistance. The application deadline for scholarships has passed.


Conference Location

The conference will be taking place at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel at 50 Park Plaza Boston, MA 02116. Hotel room reservations will be available at a special group rate of $139 per night (+ tax). Click here to book your hotel room(s) at the group rate. Group rate hotel reservations close November 13th. Hotel check in at 3pm, check out at 12pm.

Field trips will take place at sites in the Boston area. Specific sites and transportation logistics will be communicated in advance. 

View Conference Flyer

This conference is supported in part by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture.