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News and Blog

Posted 10/18/2016 8:26am by Karen Brannen.

Registration is open for the 2016 South Dakota Local Foods Conference (SDLFC) scheduled for Nov. 4-5 at the Highland Conference Center in Mitchell, SD. Three pre-conference sessions scheduled for Nov. 3 at Mitchell Technical Institute are also open for registration.  

“Brand new this year are in-depth pre-conference sessions on hops production, grant writing, social media marketing, permaculture, and cooking with indigenous foods,” said Kim Brannen, president of the South Dakota Specialty Producers Association.  

‘Hops Production 101’ features Dr. Stacy Adams, of University of Nebraska, speaking on production in Nebraska, Dr. Diana Cochran, of Iowa State University, on weed and fertility management, Dr. Cheryl Boyer, Kansas State University (via DDN) featuring online marketing and social media for small producers, Ryan Heine of 6th Meridian Hops in Yankton, Dr. Christopher Graham, SDSU Extension Agronomist, and a Growers Roundtable with North Dakota producers. This session is $35/person.  

‘Social Media and Marketing’ presented by Janet Nicolaus of Mitchell Technical Institute and Kathleen Rykhus of Pomegranate Market in Sioux Falls will help local food producers learn to better connect to their markets through Facebook, Twitter and other forms of social media. This session is $45/person.  

‘Grants— Resources & Technical Assistance’ will be taught by staff from the SD Value Added Ag Development Center, SD Department of Agriculture, and USDA Rural Development.  This session is $45/person.  

The three pre-conference session will run from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Lunch is included in the registration fee.  These sessions require advance registration by Oct 28, separate from the full conference registration.  

The SDLFC provides educational programming and networking opportunities for producers, local food enthusiasts, chefs, and resource providers of specialty crops and other niche local food products.  

Production, marketing, business and cooking tracks are offered during the main conference Nov. 4—5. Some sessions include production of grass fed meat, hops, meat goats, herb, and organic vegetables, beekeeping, flower farming, orchard trellis systems, seed saving, season extension, food safety, record keeping, business planning, online marketing, specialty grain marketing, a chefs panel, and the Dakota Fresh food hub.  

The conference will include two keynote speakers: Daniel Halsey, a certified permaculture designer and teacher for multiple academic institutions and organizations out of Prior Lake Minnesota; and “The Sioux Chef”, Sean Sherman, who was born in Pine Ridge, SD, and is now a caterer and food educator focusing on revitalizing indigenous food systems in a modern culinary context in the Minneapolis, St. Paul area. Both presenters are also offering pre-conference workshops on Nov. 3. 

Other components of the event include vendor booths, meals using local foods and a networking event on Friday evening. A new fourth track “In The Kitchen” will be offered at Mitchell Culinary Institute on Saturday.  

The conference is meant to continue the dialogue on local foods among producers, growers, consumers, school nutrition programs, grocers, restaurants and resource providers. Anyone with an interest in local foods is encouraged to attend. Continuing Education hours are available to chefs who participate in the event.  

Registration for the two-day event is $85 per person. Registration for either Friday or Saturday only is $45. Late registration, after Oct. 25 increases to $100/person for the full conference or $60/day. Visit http://2016sdlfcregistration.eventbrite.com to register and complete your online payment for any of the pre-conference sessions and the full conference.   

The SDLFC is sponsored by a collaboration of partners including the South Dakota Specialty Producers Association, SDSU Extension, South Dakota Department of Agriculture, USDA Rural Development, Dakota Rural Action, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, the South Dakota Small Business Development Center, Mitchell Technical Institute, Black Hills Food Hub, and Spearfish Local.  

Direct any questions to conference organizers at 2016sdlocalfoods@gmail.com. Follow the South Dakota Local Foods Conference online at https://www.facebook.com/SouthDakotaLocalFoods. 

Posted 10/5/2016 10:41am by Karen Brannen.

Keynote speaker, Daniel Halsey, a professional permaculture and agro-ecosystems designer, is offering a pre-conference workshop on Nov. 3 from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. CST on ‘Permaculture and Perennial Crop Systems Design.’ During this class participants will initiate design work for their own properties.  

Permaculture is an agricultural design philosophy that focuses on using natural land features and creating synergy within crop and animal production for a diverse, productive and sustainable food system.  

Halsey and his wife live on 25-acres, called SouthWoods, in Prior Lake, MN where they have managed self-sustaining forest gardens of fruiting trees, shrubs and nut crops. As a certified permaculturalist he has worked nationally and internationally designing private homesteads, intentional communities, broad-acre transition projects, and other systems for residential and commercial food production.  

The cost of this pre-conference workshop is $75/person. Participants must register by Oct. 15. Lunch is included with the fee.The session will be held at the SDSU Extension Mitchell Regional Center in the Nordby Building at the Mitchell Technical Institute campus.  

Participants are required to prepare for the class in advance by gathering information about their design site. This will include providing an areal property map and knowing specifics such as your USDA growing zone, annual precipitation, elevation range and soil type. Those who register will receive a complete list of preparation requirements.  

This pre-conference workshop is one of five offerings on Nov. 3. Additional sessions include ‘Cooking with Indigenous Food ’ with keynote speaker, Sean Sherman, ‘The Sioux Chef’ ($85); ‘Social Media and Marketing’ ($45); ‘Writing your 2017 Value Added, SARE, USDA, and Specialty Crop Block Grant’ ($45); and ‘Hops Production’ ($35). These sessions require advance registration separate from the conference registration.  

The cost for attending the South Dakota Local Foods Conference on Nov. 4-5 is $85/person. Registration for either Friday or Saturday only is $45. Visit http://2016sdlfcregistration.eventbrite.com to register and complete your online payment for the full conference or pre-conference workshops.

Direct any questions to conference organizers at 2016sdlocalfoods@gmail.com. Follow the South Dakota Local Foods Conference online https://www.facebook.com/SouthDakotaLocalFoods

Posted 9/21/2016 2:52pm by Karen Brannen.

The 2016 South Dakota Local Foods Conference is scheduled for Nov. 4-5 in Mitchell, SD. Keynote speaker, Sean Sherman, ‘The Sioux Chef’ will provide a pre-conference workshop on Nov. 3 from 4-7 p.m. CST titled ‘Cooking with Indigenous Food.’ The class will feature Native American indigenous cooking techniques and ingredients.  

Sherman, lived on the Pine Ridge Reservation as a child, and is now a caterer, consultant and food educator focusing on revitalizing indigenous food systems in the Minneapolis, St. Paul area.  

Sherman is part of the indigenous cuisine movement. The cuisine focuses on using both cultivated and foraged ingredients that were a part of the diets of the tribes of the Midwest. Sherman helped design and open Tatanka Truck, in partnership with Little Earth Community of United Tribes, a food truck featuring the native ingredients. He is working toward opening a restaurant in Minneapolis next year.  

The cost of this pre-conference workshop is $85/person. Participants must register by Oct. 15. The session will be held at the Mitchell Culinary Institute Kitchen in the Student Center Building at Mitchell Technical Institute. Continuing Education hours are available to chefs who participate in the event. All levels of cooks are welcome to attend.  

This pre-conference workshop is one of five offerings on Nov. 3. The other four sessions include ‘Permaculture and Perennial Crop Systems Design’ with keynote speaker, Dan Halsey ($75); ‘Social Media and Marketing’ ($45); ‘Writing your 2017 Value Added, SARE, USDA, and Specialty Crop Block Grant’ ($45); and ‘Hops Production’ ($35). These sessions require advance registration separate from the conference registration.  

Early bird registration for the South Dakota Local Foods Conference runs through Sept. 30. The cost for attending Nov. 4-5 is $75/person. Oct. 1, the registration goes to $85/person. Registration for either Friday or Saturday only is $45. Visit http://2016sdlfcregistration.eventbrite.com to register and complete your online payment for the full conference or pre-conference workshops. Direct any questions to conference organizers at 2016sdlocalfoods@gmail.com.  

Follow the South Dakota Local Foods Conference online https://www.facebook.com/SouthDakotaLocalFoods.