MSU Strives for Urban Food Development in Detroit


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DETROIT — The city of Detroit and Michigan State University Thursday took a significant step toward developing a broad program of food system innovation to promote local economic development, land recovery, and food security.

The aim is to position the city as a world center for urban food systems technology and development. A memorandum of understanding signed by Mayor Dave Bing and MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon calls for a program dubbed the MetroFoodPlus Innovation Cluster @ Detroit, laying groundwork for more detailed conversations with community stakeholders and, prospective partners.

“Michigan State is committed to making this a community-centered, collaborative program focusing both on developing Detroit’s vast potential and demonstrating the concept’s applicability to a rapidly urbanizing world,” Simon said. “By 2050, food production will need to double — using less water and energy than today. We see great opportunity to do good locally and connect globally.”

The university is seeding the program with an initial three-year commitment, chiefly through faculty effort representing colleges including Agriculture and Natural Resources, plus the MSU AgBioResearch office and MSU Extension.