SFCED | San Francisco Center for Economic Development


Hi-Tech and Fresh – The Food of San Francisco

With high levels of debt and diminishing markets, it’s a battle for many of Australia’s food growers to get the prices they want and need.

But in the technology hub that is San Francisco, where many of the world’s online innovations are born, the tide is starting to turn.

Food lovers and techies are teaming up to turn the traditional supply chain on its head. It’s giving more power to the farmer and more choice to the consumer.

Both in the US and Australia, there are an increasing number of consumers wanting to know more information about the food they eat.

This has contributed to a growth in farmers markets in both countries.

But for context, farmers’ markets, central retail food markets, roadside stalls and direct grower to home sales make up just seven per cent of Australia’s fresh food sales, compared to 50 per cent for Coles and Woolworths.

And in the US, the local food market accounts for about one per cent of food sales though San Francisco is an anomaly.

The city is increasingly eating local, organic and fresh food, with about 40 farmers’ markets held in the city each week, which is why there is the growing movement for food start-ups in the foggy city.

Read more: ABC Online Hi-tech and fresh – the food of San Francisco