The Annual S.D. Local Foods Partnership Meeting & Educational Sessions hosted by the S.D. Specialty Producers Association (SDSPA) are rescheduled for April 5 – 6, 2019 in Mitchell, SD. These statewide events work to promote and support the growing local foods movement. The meeting was postponed from last month due to the weather.

Registration and networking will begin at 8:30 a.m. CDT on April 5 at the Davison Co. Fairgrounds Complex- 4-H Building, 3200 West Havens, in Mitchell. The day will include a general session to review the farm bill, state legislative issues, partnership updates, and resources. Educational breakout sessions will feature marketing to the ‘now’ society, rainwater harvesting, and grape insect and disease management.  Lunch is provided to pre-registered attendees.

SDSPA members as well as non-member producers, farmers market managers and vendors, chefs, value-added businesses, local foods enthusiasts, and agencies are encouraged to attend.

The SDSPA Annual Membership meeting will also occur during this event. It will run from 3– 4 p.m. The meeting is open to all, but current membership is required to vote. Membership must be made current before April 1, 2019.

On April 6 participants will gather at the SDSU Extension Mitchell Regional Center, 1800 E. Spruce Street (Mitchell Technical Institute, Nordby Building) for an in-depth professional grant writing workshop. ‘Writing Your Future’ is scheduled from 8:30 a.m.— 2:30 p.m. This event, hosted by SDSU Extension & SDSPA, will feature grant writing basics, finding evidence to support your need, specific resources for local food related support, and funding opportunities. Lunch is provided to pre-registered attendees.

Pre-register by April 1 on the SDSPA website. The registration fee for April 5 is $15/person for SDSPA members and $20/person for non-members. The Grant Writing Workshop on April 6 is $60/person. Late or walk-in registration is an additional $5/day and does not include a meal. All those that were registered for the original event, scheduled March 1-2, are still registered.

SDSPA works to promote specialty crops and products; develop cooperative marketing opportunities; create opportunities for producers to market, network, and learn; market agritourism; develop South Dakota product identity; support research and serve as a venue for networking and information gathering.  SDSPA is made up of growers and value-added processors of non-commodity products including vegetables, fruits, herbs, grapes, specialty grains, hops, honey, nursery crops and more; Chefs, agritourism promoters and other local food enthusiasts interested in supporting South Dakota specialty crops and products are active members of the organization.

Membership dues are $25 and applications for 2019 are available at the SDSPA website. Specialty producers and local foods enthusiasts can stay up-to-date on relevant issues and educational opportunities by following SDSPA on Facebook.

For more information on this event or membership contact the SDSPA membership coordinator.




April 5: Local Foods Partnership Meetings Agenda

April 6: “Writing Your Future” Grant Writing Training Agenda