Survey Results, GIS Day, and New and Updated Data!


Thank you for taking our survey!

We received over 90 responses to our survey, most from Marylanders, but as you can see from the map above, we also had responses from other parts of the country. The feedback provided will be used to help refine the project overall and improve the website. Thank you all for your input!

Survey highlights:

  • The top reason people visit our site: "For development of a food system project"
  • Agriculture and Food Consumption data are the top two most used data sets, followed closely by Nutrition Assistance
  • 73% of respondents said that our data meets their needs
  • 36% of respondents are sharing our data and maps with their colleagues
  • And 57% said they prefer updates by email, but 36% said they would use Facebook for updates

We really appreciate your interest in our work and your time providing feedback! And congratulations to our raffle winner from Minnesota!

GIS Day! Yesterday, November 20th, was GIS Day, the annual day of celebration for Geographic Information System users around the world. We held a networking event at the Bloomberg School of Public Health to help build a community of GIS users within the school. As the saying goes, "Each of us has the power to inspire and change the world through GIS." Thanks to your support of our project, we hope we are achieving those goals here in Maryland.

New Data Layers

We continue to research and collect new data within our existing categories, as well as developing new categories of data. We recently added new data to the following:

  • Environmental Indicators
    • Air Quality:
      • Ammonia from Livestock Waste
      • Ammonia from Fertilizer Application
      • Particulate Matter <2.5 microns from Crop and Livestock Dust
    • Water Quality
      • % Population that get its water from a Private Well
  • Nutrition Assistance
    • "Emergency Food" - Pantry and Free Meal Sites: we compiled a list of all locations that offer free or reduced price groceries and/or hot meals
    • Maryland Meals for Achievement: A state program where participating schools offer free breakfast in the classroom each morning
    • Summer Food Service Program Sites: A USDA program that offers free and reduced meals to children during the summer, to continue the assistance they get during the school year.

Data Layer Updates

In order to make a good map, you must have good data! So we have updated the following layers to keep our data current:

  • Farms Selling Locally: The farms in this category all come from the same list. We updated the master list, "All Farms," but also made sure to update the specialized farm types as well.
    • All Farms
    • Certified Organic Farms
    • Farms that sell at Farmers Markets
    • Farms that sell through CSAs
    • Dairy Farms
    • Livestock and Poultry Farms
    • Urban Farms
  • Food Retail: We update our Farmers Markets list annually. And we continue to develop our data on food retail sites across the state. Currently, we have a new statewide Fast Food Chain Restaurant data, which replaces the previous data, showing locations in only a few counties. (Note that we also updated the title of this category from "Food Consumption" to "Food Retail" to more accurately match the data included.)
    • Farmers Markets
    • Fast Food Chain Restaurants


All of these new data layers are defined in the "Glossary" in the "About the Map" section.

IMPORTANT: Please remember to clear your cache on your web browser if you are not able to see the new layers of data in the left hand menu. Here is a wiki page that explains how to do this on all browsers. Please email us with any questions.

Users can subscribe on the website to receive notices when new layers are added to the map. As always, if you have any questions or feedback for us, please email us at

Launch the Maryland Food System Map Website >


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