The Greater Capital Region Food System Assessment is seeking volunteers, students, and interns to assist with community-based food system research. Research opportunities are in the subject areas of production, distribution, and processing and are available in the fields of economics, public policy, sociology, environmental studies, regional planning, transportation logistics, agriculture, and nutrition. Specific research topics and projects will be determined based on each volunteer’s interests and the project’s needs. View the list of current research topics below or download a PDF. Please email or call Food Assessment Coordinator Marissa at or 518-274-8685 for more information. 

If you are interested in applying as a research volunteer or a student researcher, follow the link to learn more.




Increase Farmland in ProductionIdentify unutilized or underutilized farmland and analyze opportunities to expand production on said land.


Look at LaborUnderstand farm and food industry labor issues and identify solutions in our region.


Increase Markets & Food Access Identify local markets for regional farmers and identify underserved communities with purchasing capacity for market development.


Understand Regulations Identify opportunities and requirements for regional farmers to expand markets.


Future Farmers Inventory support for retiring and new/young farmers.



Distribution Channels & Networks Understand food distribution in the Greater Capital Region.


Outside Markets Identify local food which is being distributed outside of the regional foodshed.


Identify WeaknessesAssess the barriers and gaps in locally grown regional food distribution networks.


Increase Resilience & Food Access Identify economic development opportunities for locally grown regional food distribution, with a focus on exploring opportunities to increase food access for low-income consumers.



Map Regional Processing Understand local food processing in the region.


How to Expand Identify barriers and solutions to expanding local food processing.


Consumer Demand Identify food in high demand that can be produced and processed regionally.


Increase Markets Identify regional markets for locally produced and processed food.


Understand Regulations Identify opportunities and requirements for regional processors to expand markets.


Generate Jobs Inventory food processing industry job training programs and identify successful models geared towards at-risk adults.