New @ FSL

Launching a new project funded by USDA AMS: "Creating High Value Market Opportunities for California’s Small- and Mid-Scale Meat Producers"

Watch the overview video (February 2022)


New course offered spring 2022: "Climate Solutions Advocacy: Be the Media"

Understand, develop, script, and articulate a climate solution narrative in easily marketable language for direct advocacy purposes. Overview of limitations of conventional hierarchical media and the historic opportunity that digital social media provides to directly build public awareness of climate solutions. Analysis of recent grassroots “people-powered” web videos, petitions, and campaigns that use digital media to build direct support for urgently needed public interest solutions.

Guest instructor: journalist Jonathan Greenberg, with UC Davis Prof. Tom Tomich (ESP) and Prof. Tony Wexler (MAE/CEE/LAWR);

  • Term: Spring 2022
  • Meeting Days/Times: Wednesdays, 2:10-4:00 PM 
  • CRN: 39722
  • Class size max: 16, limited to graduate students.  Instructor’s permission required to enroll.
  • Contact name and email for student questions and enrollment: Tom Tomich
  • Click here for the course flyer​​


Power vs Influence

Design and Implementation of a Workshop for Evaluation of the Role of Power in Shaping and Solving Challenges in a Smart Foodshed (February 2022)


2022Feb-JA.pplied ecology.jpg

An objective-based prioritization approach to support trophic complexity through ecological restoration species mixes (February 2022)


22Jan pub bioscience.jpeg

Governing Ecological Connectivity in Cross-Scale Dependent Systems (January 2022)



2021 Meat processing white paper cover image

FSL WHITE PAPER: "A New Era for Meat Processing in California?"




sustainability banner-vertical

"Sustainability" special collection on "Smart and Connected Regional Food Systems", co-edited by Tom Tomich and Casey Hoy

Collection publications, to date:

"Design and Implementation of a Workshop for Evaluation of the Role of Power in Shaping and Solving Challenges in a Smart Foodshed" (February 2022)

"Exploring Social Media Data to Understand How Stakeholders Value Local Food: A Canadian Study Using Twitter" (December 2021)

"Early Ethical Assessment: An Application to the Sustainability of Swine Body Scanners" (December 2021)

~Accepting manuscript submissions for publication throughout 2022~


The Food Systems Lab (FSL) , directed by Dr. Thomas P. Tomich and housed in the Department of Environmental Science and Policy, has grown from our group's roots in sustainable sourcing and regional landscape assessment into a program on developing and improving the information management aspects of food system sustainability, in addition to continuing our core research areas. The primary focus of this cross-cutting informatics work is to improve how sustainability can be defined, measured, and operationalized by improving information management and connectivity among complex webs of challenges, data, and actors. 

Our work has four focus areas:

  1. Food supply chains
  2. Working landscapes
  3. Data curation, analytics, and visualization
  4. Community engagement and policy analysis.