Elkhart County has been chosen as one of two counties in Indiana to participate in the year-long Rebuilding Your Local Food System program pilot for 2014. The Purdue Extension program will enable communities to better understand their local food systems, engage multiple groups in a dialogue about rebuilding their local food system, and assist with strategic plans for implementing their rebuilding strategy.
Elkhart County’s local food system meeting will be Thursday, April 17, 2014 in the Martin Room of the Elkhart County Community Center on the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds. Registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. with the forum going from 9am to 12 noon. The focus will be on innovations in the Elkhart County region around local food, farming, entrepreneurship, farm to school, local food retail, purchasing, and other topics.
Following the year-long program, pilot regions should have a better understanding of the components of a local food system, available resources for redeveloping food system infrastructure, and the significant role that broad community support plays to make such a system a success. Following the forum, it is hoped a core group of local food system leaders will participate in meetings, workshops, conferences and possibly travel to learn more about innovations in local food systems. Members of the core group that received the grant are Kurt Bullard, Dale Hess, Phyllis Miller, Mike Yoder, Phil Metzler, Jeff Burbrink and Mary Ann Lienhart Cross.
Community members, business owners, and others interested in the local food system are encouraged to attend. Please RSVP to Brandy Cavanagh at 574-533-0554 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on Purdue Extension’s “Rebuilding Your Local Food System” program, please contact Purdue Extension Elkhart County at 574-533-0554 or email Mary Ann Lienhart Cross, County Extension Director, email@example.com or Jeff Burbrink, Extension Educator, firstname.lastname@example.org. ###
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By Mary Ann Lienhart-Cross, Extension Educator - Health and Human Sciences