Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station [Food Policy Research]

About the Food Policy Institute

Photo of cranberry bog.

The Food Policy Institute (FPI) is an academic research unit of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. Founded in 1999, with the generous support of the Kellogg Foundation, Cook College and NJAES, FPI is the product of a collective vision of leaders from the food industry, government, consumer groups and university researchers. Our mission is to bring the depth of academia’s knowledge to bear on pressing issues and challenges facing the food system by providing timely and relevant research that is responsive to the needs of government, industry and the consumer.

While our focus is the Mid-Atlantic region, we embrace an inclusive view of the food system that applies to all geographies. We define the food system as one that operates "from farm to fork" and encompasses the increasingly interdependent processes of how food is regulated, produced, distributed, sold and consumed. Understanding that none of these processes exist in a vacuum, we view our role in food policy research as supporting public and private decision makers who influence aspects of the food system within which government, agriculture, industry and the consumer interact.

Recognizing that decision makers need to think ahead and remain proactive-not reactive-to the complex forces shaping the food system, we serve their needs by adhering to a demand-driven research agenda that focuses on issues of greatest relevance, now and for the future. Because we address issues on "macro" levels, we provide government officials, business executives, farmers, food retailers, restaurateurs, and consumers the intelligence they need to determine how they affect-and are affected by-these variables.

Critical issues affecting food policy emerge continuously. FPI offers an indispensable service by providing a central resource that amasses top-level experts and talent as needed. Whether research is required in the areas of economics, food science, consumer behavior, or any of the myriad disciplines that provide insight into the dynamics of the food system, our core strength rests in comprehensively meeting any food policy research objective. By applying the principles of academic research, we shape a process that assures the highest standards of accountability to both the research methods and results.

As the food system continues to evolve, FPI is dedicated to delivering an unparalleled level of responsiveness with research that makes a difference. Our goal is simple:

To be the #1 research institute serving
the needs of food policy decision makers.

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