Friends in our Field- Jodee Smith
October 17, 2023
We are a farm, and like any farm there are numerous people who share their time and talents each day to help us grow and learn. No one can work in the food system alone and the work we do, and have done for the last 20 years, takes collaboration and partnership.
It is our hope to highlight the many areas of our farm and how the research we do is impacted by the different partners in education and research we have.
Jodee Smith leads the Indiana Value Chain Network to connect producers with buyers throughout Indiana’s geographic regions. Focused on network development and values-based institutional food procurement, Jodee works to expand our understanding of challenges and opportunities and directly engages universities, schools, hospitals and other institutions in best practices and network development for food procurement on the Fischer Farms Ultimate Beef project.
With more than 11 years of experience working to rebuild infrastructure to support regional food systems in Indiana, Jodee uses an asset-based approach to ensure existing businesses and efforts from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors are aligned. Creating synergies among support organizations and business partners is key to building strong linkages in regional food systems.
Jodee’s background is in plant biology and ecology with a BA from the University of Montana and an MS from the University of California, Davis. Her deep understanding of ecological systems and experience in environmental and agricultural research, as well as starting and running a farm business continue to influence and drive the work. Applying these principles to regional food systems and climate-smart foods along with her personal passion for approaching food as medicine for good health and wellness, Jodee utilizes a full food systems framework to approach issues in farming, aggregation, purchasing and eating.