OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Alcona is A-Bubbling

Event, farm-to-table, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Molly Stepanski, Specialty Producers

There’s a new Certified Local Food Event coming your way in Alcona County this month. On September 30, Farm to Fork Alcona 2017 is hosting a natural fermentation workshop and dinner at Logger’s Trace-Springport Golf Course in Harrisville, beginning at 2pm. Farm to Fork Alcona 2017 is an initiative that is part of Inspiration Alcona, a nonprofit arts and culture organization promoting the friendly rural beauty of Alcona. This initiative is working to help Alcona County become home to the farm-to- fork movement.

Teaching Class

A Final Summertime Hurrah : NMU’s Hospitality Gala

Event, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Melissa Orzechowski, Stories

Connecting chefs, farmers, and the community as well as celebrating Northern Michigan University’s Hospitality Management program is what the Hospitality Gala on Sept. 23 is all about. Chefs and students currently in the program are teaming up to bring eight stations featuring food from farms in the Marquette area.

Birmingham Corn Festival, August 14, 2016, Birmingham Farmer's Market, Birmingham, MI.

Corn Festival at the Birmingham Farmers Market

Event, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Guest Post, Press Release, Southeast Michigan

BIRMINGHAM, MI, August 4, 2017 – Celebrate one of Michigan’s sweetest harvests with games, special kids crafts, demonstrations and old-fashioned corn shelling at the Birmingham Farmers Market Corn Festival on Sunday, August 13 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Enjoy fresh prepared corn dishes including roasted corn, kettle popcorn, corn bread and other homemade recipes. The day’s top seller will be fresh roasted Michigan sweet corn.

coop before

Building a Co-op in Iron County

Economy, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Melissa Orzechowski, Retail

Darren Mercier didn’t imagine he’d be spearheading the effort to establish a natural food cooperative. But, when he moved to Iron River on the western border of the U.P. seven years ago, he and his wife missed the easy access to the healthy foods they were used to eating. The Merciers aren’t the only people in Iron River who want more healthy, organic, and local options. More than 50 people have already become members of The Co-op of Iron County before the doors have opened and many people have told Darren when the store is open, they plan to become members as well.

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 10.35.50 AM

Stone Coop Farm: Supporting the Next Generation of Farmers

Economy, Event, farm-to-table, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Kelly Wilson, Southeast Michigan, Stories

Like many first generation farmers, Joannée DeBruhl came to agriculture in a roundabout way. After being laid off, Joannée and a few friends started a community garden to benefit Gleaner’s Community Food Bank. The success of this project ignited Joannée’s deep passion for agriculture and her desire to become a full-time farmer. Recognizing her need for a more formal agricultural education, Joannée enrolled in the MSU Student Organic Farms’ Organic Farmer Training Program (OFTP) in 2010. In the OFTP, she spent 9 months immersing herself in the nuances of growing healthy, organic plants and running a farm business.

IMG_4982

Where the Road Meets the Wine: Tour De Vine

Event, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Molly Stepanski, Stories, Wine

“It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and can coast down them…. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motorcar only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” 

~ Ernest Hemingway

Some may argue there’s no greater combo than pairing a bucolic bike ride with a glass of wine (or two) when you reach your destination. I’ll do you one (or a few) better….how about biking to a vineyard in northeastern Michigan and being greeted with a cornucopia of wines, a pop-up food bar created by a local chef, and a tour of the almost 15 year old vines with Thunder Bay Winery and vineyard owners? Well, look no further: Tour De Vine with Harborside Cycle and Sport has become an annual event to celebrate just outside of Alpena, in pastoral Ossineke, a place that has become surprisingly fruitful for Michigan grown grapes.  

Argus Sunrise

Giving Back to the Farmers: Argus Farm Stop

Benefit, Economy, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Kelly Wilson, Retail, Southeast Michigan, Stories

Did you know that farmers receive only 17 cents per retail sales dollar (on average) when their food is sold through traditional channels? The remaining 83 cents of this dollar goes to middlemen, distributors, and other players in the food system. Selling direct to consumer (farmers markets, roadside stands, CSA programs, etc.) generates higher margins for farmers (and strengthens consumer’s ties to their food) but can come with its own set of unique challenges and risks: unfavorable weather impacting sales, large time/energy demands, lack of convenience, and seasonality.

growing hope happy

Produce to the People! : Growing Hope’s Mobile Farm Market

Emma Beauchamp, Event, Farmers Markets, Get Involved, Southeast Michigan, Stories

“Every mobile farm market is unique to the community it’s in,” said Erica Bloom, the program director of Growing Hope in Ypsilanti. Through their urban farm demos, in-school programs, farmers markets, and more, Growing Hope offers educational opportunities and greater access to healthy foods in the area.“We have been learning together with our partners in Detroit, Lansing, and Flint on how to best bring fresh produce into the neighborhoods.”

TLD-Media_release_header_Mar132017

Don’t Forget, the ‘Farmers Market Brunch!’

Bailey Samp, Event, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Press Release

Media Release

For Immediate Release

Date: June 13, 2017

Contact: Bailey Samp, events@localdifference.org

Don’t Forget, the ‘Farmers Market Brunch!’

TRAVERSE CITY – Summer is here and it’s peak season for local agriculture in our beautiful region. With all the bountiful produce, our local farmers need community support — and lucky for us that support includes eating healthy delicious food.

manton mill

MAHRG is Looking for a Partner

Economy, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Guest Post, Janice Heuer

 The Manton Area Heritage Restoration Group (MAHRG) hopes to partner with a business in need of space. This is a rare opportunity to lease a large, historic grain mill, full of rugged beauty (but in need of extensive repair.)