Northwest Michigan Food and Farming Network (FFN) Business Meeting
May 18, 2016, 10:30-noon
In Attendance: Amanda Kik of Crosshatch, Brian Bourdages of Tamarack Holdings, Carol Danly of the Food and Farming Network, Elise Crafts of Networks Northwest, Heather Ratliff of Cherry Capital Foods, Juliana Lisuk of SEEDS, Kelly Lively of Cherry Capital Foods, Margaret Sheets of Taste the Local Difference, Meghan McDermott of Groundwork, Mollie Thomas of Crosshatch, Rick Gleason of Farm Bureau, Rod Robinsonof Eaton B Goode, Sarah Eichberger of MSU-E (remote), Scott Smith of Local Food Alliance (remote), Sharron May of The May Farm (remote), Stephanie Cumper of FoodCorps, Steve Nance of Oryana, Tasha Lapinski of Baker College-Cadillac & consultant, Tricia Phelps of Taste the Local Difference, Val Stone of Northwest Food Coalition/Goodwill/Salvation Army, Wendy Wieland of MSU-E
⦁ Consider printing FFN business cards and postcards with meeting/action team/website info for use by active members. (carried over)
⦁ URGENT: Reach out to Dr. Benishek to let him know Continue reading →
Northwest Michigan Food and Farming Network (FFN) Business Meeting
March 16, 2016, 10:30-noon
In Attendance: Amanda Kik, Bill Palladino, Brian Bourdages, Brian Matchett, Carol Danly, Hannah Fernando, Heather Ratliff, Kris Thomas, Mark Coe, Meghan McDermott, Mollie Thomas, Rick Gleason, Rod Robinson, Sarah Eichberger, Sharron May (remote), Steve Nance (remote),Tricia Phelps
⦁ Consider printing FFN business cards and postcards with meeting/action team/website info for use by active members.
⦁ Provide Sarah with contact information for farmers who have done farm to school successfully.
⦁ Suggest to Rick venues for 150 people that can showcase local food.
1. April 20, 2016 (study session) – Topic will be economic development with an agricultural focus. There will be brief presentations of three reports on the state of northwest Michigan agriculture and a panel discussion follows. Panelists and presenters include representatives from Networks Northwest, Lakes to Land Initiative, SBDC, plus others (to be determined).
2. May 18, 2016 (business meeting)
3. June 15, 2016 – If you enjoyed the post-summit happy hour, you’ll love our end-of-the season celebration at the Grand Traverse Foodshed Alliance, 1st floor of the Cherry Capital Foods building. It will be a grand opening, of sorts, for the Foodshed Alliance! Details will be forthcoming. Continue reading →
The Food and Farming Network held its January business meeting at the GT Foodshed Alliance/TLD offices on Wednesday January 20th, 2016. Minutes from the meeting and a full video as recorded from our ZOOM video conferencing system can be found below. Continue reading →
Nov 18, 2015, 10:30 a.m. to noon, Grand Traverse Foodshed Alliance, 1610 Barlow, Traverse City
INTRODUCTIONS: Brian Bourdages, Mark Coe, Stephanie Cumper, Carol Danly, Sarah Eichberger, Sharron May, Steve Nance, Bill Palladino, Tricia Phelps, Heather Ratliff, Amber Ressl, Scott Smith, Mikaela Taylor, Kris Thomas, Wendy Weiland
SURVEY RESULTS: Total responses to the member survey was 228 with the majority (more than 100) from consumers, 29 from farmers, and the remainder from others in the food system. Overall, members find the 20% by 2020 goals to be Continue reading →
Sept 16, 2015, 10:30 a.m. to noon, Grand Traverse Foodshed Alliance, 1610 Barlow, Traverse City
INTRODUCTIONS: Amanda Kik, Amy MacKay, Amy Martin, Annie Olds, Bill Koucky, Bill Palladino, Brian Bourdages, Carol Danly, Heather Ratliff, Mark Coe, Meghan McDermitt, Rod Robinson, Sandi McArthur, Sarah Eichberger, Scott Smith, Sharron May, Stephanie Cumper, Tricia Phelps, Wendy Weiland, Zane Schwaiger
ROLE OF VISTA:See blog post of 7/27/15. VISTA provides support to organizations for the purpose of increasing capacity. The focus with FFN is measurement of progress against goals and outreach/relationship building. Carol has increased the activity of FFN on social media and has attended three of ISLAND’s Twilight Tours plus a Local Food Alliance meeting in Petoskey. Continue reading →
Once again, deep apologies for messing up the meeting invitation last week. We’ve had a lot going on and I simply put the wrong date on the calendar. Hopefully some of you will be able to make it or tune in Wednesday May 20th at 10 AM at Cherry Capital Foods. The address there is 1610 Barlow Street. The building is the large warehouse structure behind the building at the street’s edge. See our calendar for instructions and a map.
It’s our last formal meeting of the year, with June lining up to be an informal pot-luck style gathering of some sort, then off for the summer. After some scattered input from around the network I have also added a brief discussion item to plan a revisit of our Network’s mission, goals and objectives for 2016. There is some indication that the Good Food Charter connection is good, but not fully representative of current Network direction. We’ll put this on the floor to hear what you think.
Here’s the invite and the revised agenda. Thanks for your patience and continued trust.
Topic: Food and Farming Network Meeting May 20 (10:00 AM – 11:30 AM)
Kaley Butts – TBA-ISD Manufacturing Technology Academy (MTA) Student
Diane Conners – MLUI
Ben Mahlich – Greenstone
Christina – FarmRaiser
Travis Bratschi – Greenstone
Zane Schaiger – Leelanau Conservancy
Bill Palladino – MLUI
Steve Nance – Oryana
Brian Bourdages – GT Conservancy
Wendy Wieland – MSU Extension
North Central IPM Grant (Rob) – Great Lakes Hopworks will be applying for Grant
Food Farms and Health Event (Diane) – Debrief Meeting this afternoon, potential to sync up with Small Farms Conference for larger event, this may lead to shared opportunities
LFPP (Bill) – Farm to Freezer – big grant to get much larger space, larger freezer, etc
LFPP (Bill) – MLUI – Received
MI Dept Community Health (Sarah) – focused on communities with disproportionate quantities of chronic disease using policy change and potentially healthy food focus to work on chronic disease. Sarah will be applying in conjunction with the District 10 Health Dept.
20 by 2020, Measurement, Summit
MLUI has committed to pay for full time vista position for the food and farming network. The design of that position is to specifically help measurement for each of the task force groups for the network.
Online meeting this week with consultants for MSU regarding the shared measurements project for the Good Food Charter. Initial step in the collective impact model is for the Nebraska consultants to interview groups throughout the state. They will be doing great work, but we may not
Lexicon of Sustainability
March 20th Event
Premiering FFN Annual Report (see below)
State of the Region Ag. Report
Summit and Report Planning
Summit will launch the report which will illustrate what is happening in our regional food and farming community.
Asking people to write their own short story about what they are doing to support the network goals
After this meeting, we will be sending out a survey to request from each of you, what is happening in our community.
Similar to the rapid fire updates at the summit last year, we will put together a written book of all of these stories
Annual report at MDARD’s request
Qualitative and Quantitative story of our region
Tool for grant writing, useful to show what is actually going on in our network
Biggest challenge will be to keep it short, and provide a visual
Deadline – End of the Year
Write 300-500 Words
Everyone should participate. If you are a part of this network in any way, we want to hear your story.
Think Beyond Grand Traverse County
Health and Youth Networking Group
Support of Farm To School
Cooking With Kids at the Fair
Double Up Food Bucks
Foods Farms and Health Conference
Task Force Structure TBD
10 Cents a Meal Metrics well underway, MSU Regional Foods Systems Graduate Student Assistant working with the receipts, to create a measurement system for local Farm to School
Working with Munson to create tools for Farm to Institution Measurements
Suggestion to help incentivize local purchasing, ie. grant to Munson that would incentivize tracking process,
Food Innovation Hub Update
Parking lot and sidewalks complete,
Some suites are whiteboxed
10 tenants have committed, 3 more are interested if there is space. Some are new businesses, some are existing businesses expanding
FoodShed Alliance is having a visioning meeting on 12/3. Looking to increase board, and determine next steps. Invitations will follow visioning meeting
MSU Product Center Feasibility Study for Malting Barley Center
Statewide Interest in building a facility, and rotating in a new variety of hop growing
iii. Byproduct use companies popping up in the region
Grand Traverse Culinary Oil and Flour
Creating flour from grape skins.
Using Grape Seeds to create oil
Turns out that Vermont Maple Syrup can be tapped in Michigan and bottled in Vermont
MSU is working with an organization to grow that industry
Sap to Syrup uses a lot of energy, Sap is going to be the next Coconut Water
Growing group is looking for strategic growth
Food Equity / Food Security
Difference between equity, access, and security
Equity is a concept that crosses all of the goals. How can equity be woven into each of the network objectives.
iii. The goal is focused on Access.
Using the discussion topic as a template, Sarah connected with:
Mary Stanton – Blessings in a Backpack
Scott Smith – Local Food Alliance
Results of discussions
Groups that are working to feed those in need might be interested in procuring local products, but at the moment there is no system in place for that
Donations come in directly, and through sources like Food Rescue, etc.
Pantries prefer to procure locally over Sam’s Club or Walmart, but budget constraints have them cornered. No assistance is provided to pantries to source locally
Suggestion: Empty Bowls has funding available
Clarification: Pantries are not tracking or measuring food given
There is a national movement to support pantries in sourcing healthier foods
Kris. Different pantries have different regulations on # of visits allowed, etc. Pantries say they have some local produce available at some point throughout the year, but the quantity is very limited
vii. Don: Issue with providing access, and battling the big commodity groups. If money is going to be made available, congress will have to be directed to prioritize local over the the big commodity groups. Perhaps we need to play a larger role in that conversation. (Bill: Oren Hesterman has been at the center of that conversation)
viii. Diane: Focus on building existing resources like Double Up Food Bucks
Bill: Access at Farmers Markets is a different conversation in GT County where there are 14 farmers markets offering Double Up Food Bucks vs. Kalkaska County with the highest poverty rates and 0 farmers markets
Question: who in the region is leading the conversation in increasing retailers that accept SNAP, etc.
Tricia: Hoophouses for Health program. Farmers will be given a loan for the hoophouse. They will be paid back for that loan by giving produce to Head Start.
xii. Christina: FarmRaiser offers a donation to the community basket. The buyer can choose to purchase food that gets sent to the local food pantries
Farmland and Resources Goal
Brian, Rod, Jessica, Laura, and Amanda
Availability, affordability, and the associated water and resources
iii. Divided Group into categories, and determined what are the respective subcategories that make sense for us to measure (or are already being measured)
Permanent and Temporary Protected Farmland
Quantity of MEAP Verifications
Results of MEAP Verifications
Results of Watershed Center Studies
Energy Network Connections required to track energy used by farms, and processors
Rod will connect with TAAR for appraisal results
Trends in financing, how does that speak to vitality/diversity/etc
2020 Fund and other new opportunities available
Farmland Protection Ordinances
Use of Ag Census can track change over time
Collective Impact Project
We have started our own locally with North Sky Network
MSU has started a statewide project
Policy? Interaction with Farm Bureau?
Invitation to join the Farm Bureau as auxiliary members
Subcommittee to push suggestions to Farm Bureau
iii. Policy Committee:
Historically Brian, Diane, and team would meet up around specific legislation, as opposed to considering what would directly influence our goals
Someone with capacity should be keeping up with the local and national policies, and comment periods.
Reinstate the committee, Spearheaded by Brian, include Don, Diane, Sarah, Jim. Start the conversation. Connect with Local Food Alliance?
Here as a resource and looking forward to providing to this community.
Around the Table
Thanks for coming
Strong and mighty group, funded by Petoskey Harbor Springs Development Foundation.
iii. New Business connection with the Friendship Center came out of that meeting
Josh Stoltz is the new ED of Grow Benzie. Warm welcome!
MSU Extension Advisory Council is looking for an additional member for their regional county.
TBAISD Career Tech Center – Manufacturing Tech Center. Laura is hosting a Sr. from Elk Rapids to provide job shadowing, support with career goals, etc.
Zane Schwaiger: Tools for Farmland Access, presentation to the conservancy board to utilize tools from East Coast about aging farmers and the future of farming. Zane would like to bring that info back to our group following that meeting.
Tom Nelson – New ED at Leelanau Conservancy
Tricia Phelps – TLD Project Coordinator
Next Meeting: Next Meeting at the Grand Traverse Conservation District (bring your skis and snowshoes) 12/17. Kris Thomas will be our guest speaker to report on the Benzie Cty Study. (Following up on the 12/3 launch at MI Works).