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Revealing the hidden geography of alternative food networks: The travelling concept of farmers’ markets

Fendrychová, Lenka and Jehlicka, Petr (2018). Revealing the hidden geography of alternative food networks: The travelling concept of farmers’ markets. Geoforum, 95 pp. 1–10.

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Alternative food networks in post-socialist settings are often studied using concepts and analytical tools developed in the Anglo-American context. As a result, the findings tend to replicate and confirm rather than challenge and extend the extant knowledge and theorisations. Based on a recent study of farmers’ markets in the Czech capital Prague, the paper claims that viewing these ‘from the periphery’ produces novel insights complementing those garnered in researching them in the West. In the context of earlier alternative food initiatives, the boom of farmers’ markets, which Prague experienced in the early 2010s, was unparalleled. In less than 24 months, 41 farmers’ markets were established in and around the city. Focusing methodologically on the discourse of the organisers of farmers’ markets and theoretically on the complex hidden geography underlying the farmers’ markets’ boom, we are able to unpick the intricacy and paradoxical nature inherent in this development. While acknowledging the farmers’ markets embeddedness in the local context, we argue that a more comprehensive understanding of farmers’ markets requires engagement with a flow of ideas and know-how transcending the locality. The ensuing type of farmers’ markets is a result of interactions among different travelling concepts as well as of their encounter with the specificities of the local post-socialist context. We argue that the fact that these concepts were not necessarily concordant with each other and also insufficiently adapted to the local context had a profound effect on Prague farmers’ markets’ boom.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2018 Elsevier Ltd.
ISSN: 0016-7185
Project Funding Details:
Funded Project NameProject IDFunding Body
SVV UK260199Charles University, Prague
Urban Food Strategies and Sustainability: Potential and LimitsIGS03P1Faculty of Economics of University of South Bohemia in České
Keywords: Alternative food networks; Farmers’ markets; Food relocalization; Post-socialism; Situated knowledge; Travelling concepts
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies > Geography
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Research Group: OpenSpace Research Centre (OSRC)
Item ID: 56343
Depositing User: Petr Jehlička
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2018 10:23
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2020 05:38
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