Arkansas Local Food Network (ALFN) was founded in 2006 as the Arkansas Sustainability Network (ASN). ASN’s mission was to develop more sustainable communities through education, and innovation, and community collaboration with the goal of progress towards a healthy social, economic, and environmental future.
The online farmer’s market was born in June of 2007 when Nao Ueda, Danielle DePreux, and Katy Elliott saw an opportunity to support a local farm family. As Sue and Rusty Nuffer of Armstead Mountain Farms transitioned sales from farmers markets to restaurants, founders organized friends and family and coworkers to cooperatively purchase Armstead’s fresh, local food. This cooperative purchasing effort quickly began to attract more farms.
Since then, the market has continued to grow and today well over 30 farms and local businesses sell direct through ALFN. The program offers online direct sales as a way to allow farmers an additional outlet for sales – Farmers can deliver their online sales and then also work other local markets. This provides a boost in sales that promotes farm viability and local economic development. More farms = more food and greater food security for all.