Keynote – Sharon Adams, Walnut Way Corporation
Track 1 – Producer / Market / Business Development
Food Manufacturing and Shared-Use Processing Facilities – Mary Pat Carlson
Wisconsin is becoming one of the leading states in the development of shared-use, community-based….food processing facilities. There are several models that are being developed in the Midwest to fit the targeted needs of communities from rural to urban. This presentation will explore the options from non-profit to for-profit based models. Other alternatives from university-supported to stand-alone projects will be addressed. The services provided to the clients of these programs are essential components to the success of the clients being served by these programs. Also addressed will be the staffing, community support, regulations, and methods of long-term sustainability. Mary Pat Carlson has been working directly with small-scale food processors, co-packing clients, start-up facilities, and existing projects throughout Wisconsin, Illinois, Colorado and New Mexico for the past 10 years. She will share some of the success stories and challenges she has encountered. Information on networking opportunities and participation in FoodBIN…a Wisconsin statewide network of food processing facilities will also be presented. Time will be allowed for participants to ask questions.
The New Auburndale Food Cooperative- What we did and how we did it – Sally Cutler and Theresa Tallman
This fast paced workshop will take the audience through the development of a newly formed Central Wisconsin Cooperative, Auburndale Food Cooperative. This Wisconsin Cooperative was formally approved in July of 2012 with the vision for creating a sustainable local food system. The presentation will share how the CO-OP bridges the gap between local producers and consumers that desire quality, choice and convenience by the use of an email order and multicity delivery system. The presentation will cover the process for organizing potential members, the models reviewed for organizing the group, and the current system of the Cooperative. Presenters will share successes, challenges, and future goals of the five Amish and five English founder producers. Presenters will also share the guidelines, By-Laws, brochures, and current pricing. There will be time for questions and discussion.
Superior Networking: Linking Arms Within a Bioregion to Build and Change Systems – Liz Johnson, Janeki Fisher-Merrit, Randel Hanson, Michael Stanitis
In Superior Networking we will share success stories and talk about how we are connecting across our unique bioregion with new, more, and unexpected allies. Farmer producers will share what they see as opportunities and challenges to reaching a diverse marketplace. The concept of connecting across the region with the goal to impact institutions and infrastructure systems change will also be discussed. Take away information will also be provided on Good Food Charter and Lake Superior Compact and proposed LSSFA Superior Grown Label.
Buy Fresh Buy Local Southern WI – Connecting Restaurants, Farmers, and Consumers – Theresa Feiner
Please join Theresa Feiner to learn about REAP Food Group’s community-based, farm-to-restaurant program, Buy Fresh Buy Local. This program partners with food service providers in Southern Wisconsin to help them procure and market local food through events and marketing materials. Theresa will talk about its successful development, challenges along the way, and how they hope to grow it in the future. Also to be discussed: fostering relationships between restaurants and agricultural producers, providing a branding tool with the Buy Fresh Buy Local Label, and educating consumers through events and marketing materials.
Track 2 – Food Security and Health
Wisconsin’s Food System: State of the Plate – Laura Brown, Erin Peot and Amber Canto
This presentation will involve a broad analysis of secondary data sources to provide a baseline overview of Wisconsin’s current food system across the spectrum of food systems activities from production to processing to consumption. Whenever possible this will include trend/historic data as well as interactive graphic representations of the data including infographics, charts, and graphs that educators may use in communicating this data at the local level. The presentation will reference publically available data sources including two new web based portals developed to allow data downloads, mapping, and analysis tools for food systems indicators. The presentation will include an over view of best practices when using and referencing data (understanding margins of error, geographic scales, making appropriate comparisons).
Healthy Foods for All: SNAP at the Dane County Farmers’ Market – Lexa Dundore
The Healthy Food for All Initiative is focused on the creation of a ten year plan to increase access to healthy food for low-income households in Madison and Dane County, with a special emphasis on children. The Community Action Coalition is working with the United Way and other community partners, with funding by the Goodman Foundation, to look at the different aspects of the food system that relate to accessibility for these households. Those aspects include: production, transformation/aggregation (processing/packaging), distribution, access (Food Pantries, FoodShare, WIC Farmer’s Markets, Farm to School), and consumption (nutrition information, preparation, preservation). To feature one program that helps increase access to healthy food, this presentation will give an overview of the FoodShare Program at the Dane County Farmer’ Market. This program and others like it allow customers receiving SNAP benefits to redeem their benefits to purchase foods and plants that grow into foods directly from local producers. We will discuss the logistics of our program and demonstrate how it fits into this framework of ensuring that all members of our community have nutritious, local foods to put on the table. We will describe the status of the Healthy Foods Initiative and the FoodShare Program at the DCFM, as well as our goals for the futures of these projects.
Healthy Choices, Healthy Community: A Campaign to increase access to healthy foods on the South Side of Milwaukee – Tatiana Maida, Lelitza Garcia and Sharon Lezberg
The Healthy Choices program, an obesity prevention and intervention program at the Sixteenth Street Community Health Center in Milwaukee, focuses on family education and community advocacy to improve the health of families on the near South side of Milwaukee. In the summer of 2012, the leadership group of the Healthy Choices program joined forces with a coalition of health organizations and with two community-owned grocery stores to launch the South side Milwaukee Healthy Foods Grocery Store Campaign. The project began when community leaders reviewed the results from a study on the availability and prices of 50 healthy food items and decided to approach El Rey and Pete’s grocery stores and request to expand their healthy items including more whole grain options and seeds such as quinoa, sesame and flax, among other. The owners of the stores were enthusiastic about offering these new food items. The coalition assisted with identifying a process to approach the grocery store owners, as well as with the development of marketing materials, shelf talkers, and an evaluation protocol. A group of community leaders from the Healthy Choices program offered food demonstrations on how to prepare and use the new food items during three weekends in November. The presentation will detail the process by which the campaign came to be, the results of the food demonstration, the collaboration with grocery store owners, discussion about how and why the new food items were chosen, and a description of the campaign partnership and how it evolved.
Eat, Learn, Grow: Connecting Children to Local Food Systems – Michelle Black and Amy Giffin
Healthy eating and enjoying access to local fresh food have become luxuries to low-income and underserved communities. This has led to the shocking correlation between obesity, malnutrition and hunger. Milwaukee Center for Independence (MCFI) Nutrition Services aims to be leaders in providing and advocating for healthy, nutritious food through school gardens, urban agriculture, healthy school meals, and nutrition education. MCFI Nutrition Services currently serves more than 16,000 meals to low-income, underserved children living in the city of Milwaukee each day. In additional to food, the Health and Wellness Programming provides comprehensive nutrition education and wellness curriculum for all community partners.
One curriculum is Little Sprouts University (LSU), a pilot program created and taught by Registered Dietitians and members of MCFI’s Nutrition Services team, which aims to address the issues of obesity and malnutrition and improve children’s nutritional health and wellbeing through experiential learning. The program launched at the School for Early Development and Achievement (SEDA) in 2010, a free charter school in the heart of Milwaukee, Wisconsin that welcomes students with and without special needs in a full inclusion environment. LSU incorporates both nutrition education and garden-based learning to change the health behaviors and attitudes of the students. In classroom micro-farming, outdoor gardening, taste testing, food preparation and innovative lessons are all used to engage students in learning about nutrition, gardening, and the environment.
Track 3 – Community Development and Cultural Food Systems
*Growing Food in Indian Country – Dan Cornelius, Carl Butterfield and Todd Brier
This panel discussion will give you an overview of several food system initiatives in Native American communities across Wisconsin. Practical information including successes and challenges as well as insight into the role of tradition in Tribal food system work will be discussed followed by a question and answer session. Please join our panel for this informative conversation.
Beyond Candy Bar and Magazine Sales: A School Fundraiser Model that Supports the Local Food Economy – Torri Bradley, Krista Engelhardt and Lynn Markham
The Local Food Fundraiser, supported by Central Rivers Farmshed, is an innovative approach to school fundraising that raises awareness of local food, supports local farmers, educates and connects students and families to local farms and businesses who prepare local food, and supports the local economy. This program may serve as a model that can easily be replicated in other school districts. Topics to be discussed will include history of program development, logistics of running the fundraiser, and educational opportunities for students and community members as they relate this this fundraising initiative.
*Fostering a Strategic Vision in the Lake Superior Local Food System – Christine Kelly, Tom Wojciechowski and Jason Fischbach
Many local food networks are emerging across Wisconsin and most recognize the importance of coordinating local efforts to create win-win solutions. This presentation shares the efforts of the Lake Superior region to create a broader strategic vision from within the local community and food system stakeholders and to collaboratively define a set of key objectives and action items to support the continued revitalization of the our local agricultural economy.
*Local Economies: Knowledge Gaps and Educational Needs among Community Members – Clare Hintz and Jeremy Solin
In this workshop we’ll present a synthesized local economy framework and the results of a research project to understand a highly educated sample’s knowledge of factors that contribute to the development of local economies. Local foods were a consistent aspect described in individuals’ understanding of the development of
local economies. Unfortunately, beyond the tangible basics (e.g., local
ownership) there was little understanding of the process and essential factors
of local economies. The research suggests considerable knowledge barriers to the development of local economies and necessary educational efforts to overcome these barriers. Developing local food systems provides a perfect case study for growing public understanding of how to build a thriving local economy.
Track 4 – Farm to School
#Building Local Food Citizenship in Your School – Joel.Kuehnhold and Lincoln High School students
Interested in changing the perception of how food, nutrition, and agriculture are viewed in your school? Join in and see how students involved in agricultural education classes at Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln High School built a culture of local food citizenship in their school through educating peers on sustainable agriculture, obesity prevention, and where exactly that chicken nugget came from. Hear first hand how students are growing vegetables on campus to be served in school lunches and how sustainably grown food from local farms can make an appearance in a lunch line near you! See examples of the skills students have developed, how community partnerships are formed, and how students entire outlook on agriculture can be changed with just a little bit of salad greens.
WI Farm to School: Purpose, Programs and People – Sara Tedeschi and Vanessa Herald
This session will begin with a brief overview of recent developments in regards to farm to school in the state of Wisconsin, the Great Lakes region and nationally. Funding and resources currently supporting the growth of farm to school in WI will be highlighted, with a focus on state specific Toolkits and handbooks created through state agency and non-profit partnerships to further farm to school and school gardening efforts around the state. The session will bring to life key components of these resources through guest panelists and their community stories, both stories of success and stories of challenge and determination. Panelists will highlight such topics as; getting a farm to school program started, the producer/school food service relationship (including procurement and distribution), the benefits and challenges of school gardens, incorporating local foods into the school meal and snack programs and innovations in farm to school education. Time permitting, we will encourage questions and dialogue with panelists.
#Making a Difference with AmeriCorps Farm to School – Ashley Ponschok and Shawna Bohan
This presentation involves the sharing of Farm to School success stories from two very different communities who were awarded Transform Wisconsin grants to help fuel their efforts. The Farm to School program in Vernon County is extremely successful and builds on six years of experience, whereas Farm to School in Brown County is fairly new. Both communities have encountered similar barriers along the way, and the geographic as well as demographic differences have resulted in the development of creative solutions. The core idea that everyone wins with Farm to School is the basis of both programs, but the process of implementation and community engagement are very distinct from one community to the next.
The Vernon County program has developed into what it is today by starting small and adding new programs each year. By showing specific examples surrounding the Harvest Challenge, collaboration with 5th Season Co-op, and classroom nutrition education, Vernon County will inspire everyone to show their support for Farm to School.
In Brown County, the program is in the development stage. The necessary relationships that will make it possible for Green Bay area schools to start sourcing locally are just beginning to form. The beginning steps are usually the hardest, and Brown County’s early strategies and accomplishments will help motivate other communities to get involved with Farm to School.
*Creating a local food procurement program within institutional cafeterias – Nathan Engstrom and Alan Filipczak
When students eat in the Northland College cafeteria, they are now consuming more local foods. The increase in food that doesn’t have to travel far to get to the table is part of a Local Foods Initiative the college is rolling out for the 2012-2013 term. Northland College is working in partnership with UW-Extension, the Chequamegon Food Co-op, Bayfield Regional Food Producers Cooperative, and several area farms and businesses to supply students and campus-goers with local foods. This presentation will tell the story of how this innovative program was taken from idea to reality in only a few short months—and where it’s headed in the future.
Track 5 – Soup to Nuts
Innovations in Community and Regional Food Systems – Steve Ventura, Sharon Lezberg and Samuel Pratsch
We will provide highlights of our USDA-NIFA supported “Community and Regional Food Systems” project. This will include presentation and discussion of our evolving community food system framework, innovations developed as part of our community engagement projects, explanation of tools, metrics, and data bases used for food system evaluation, and findings from community-based research in terms of food sovereignty and food justice, university-community relations, and collective impact.
Wisconsin Food Policy Council Concept – Wisconsin Food Policy Council Work Group
The goal of this presentation will be to present concepts related to establishing a statewide food policy council in Wisconsin. During the presentation, feedback and open dialogue about a food policy council white paper further outlining the concepts will be facilitated. The white paper will include a working description of the potential structure and role of a Wisconsin food policy council, an analysis of potential food system-related policies, and an overview of food system assets within the state.
Carrots for Congress! Cultivating Champions for Local Foods in Madison and Washington – Bridget Holcomb and Kara Slaughter
Attend this session to develop skills and strategies for influencing State and Federal Policy so that it supports Local Foods. As a farmer, consumer, educator, or entrepreneur, you are working every day to help build a thriving local food economy. Make sure that government has got your back! Learn how to advocate for policies such as conservation and beginning farmer programs in the Federal Farm Bill, and for state programs like Farm to School and Buy Local Buy Wisconsin. We’ll share inside tips for the best way to reach out to legislators, and invite participants to share their own success stories in advocating for local foods at the local, state, and federal levels.
*#Food Forest Approach to Food Security and Business Development – Adrian Lee
Although a relatively new term in the modern lexicon, “food forests” are an ancient way of sustaining human populations through a perennially based agriculture. This presentation will use examples, past and present, of cultures that mimicked the structure and dynamics of ecosystems to create permacultures. These designs produced abundant yields of food, fuel, and fodder while maintaining the ecological services that all life depends on. We will also discuss the value of food forests as they relate to food security and market potential and how to apply the concept of “food forests” to both.
* these presentations highlight our host region – The Chequamegon Bay area
# these presentations include student/youth presenters