Registration Open for South Dakota Local Foods Conference

Growers, processors, chefs and consumers passionate about local foods are invited to register for the 2019 South Dakota Local Foods Conference (SDLFC) scheduled for Nov. 1-2 at the RedRossa Italian Grille in Pierre, SD.

This regional event will provide networking opportunities, speaker panels, and educational sessions on tools for success, production, and collaborative ideas.

Friday’s conference features keynote speaker Kelsey Ducheneaux, Natural Resources Director for the Intertribal Agriculture Council. Ducheneaux works to effectively reach and support the enhancement of Indian agriculture and food systems. Additionally, she is a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and a fourth-generation beef rancher.

Ducheneaux will present ‘Embracing our Tribal Sovereignty to Promote Local Food Systems.’ She will share her perspective on ways we can embrace our diversity across the state to support more regenerative production practices, producer friendly agricultural environments, and community-driven food systems.

Saturday’s keynote presenter is Carol Ford, a Minnesota vegetable producer specializing in Deep Winter Greenhouse (DWG) production. She is also an educator with the Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships of MN Extension and author of ‘Northland Winter Greenhouse.’

Ford’s keynote ‘Building Resilient Rural Communities in Northern Climates’ will include big ideas about the concept of resilient rural communities.  She will integrate discussion on how DWG can provide options for young people interested in farming, a method of farming on less land, a welcome income stream in the off-season, and a source of fresh foods in food deserts. Ford will additionally provide a breakout session on DWG production.

Breakout sessions offered during the conference will feature: producing for restaurants, a chefs’ panel, getting your product on shelves, farm homesteading, organic production, food is medicine, grass fed beef & bison markets, the Thermo Greenhouse Community Project, farm to school, resource providers and grants and more.

This year the Nose to Tail Chef Experience at Drifters Bar & Grille is included in the 2-day registration fee. Guests can enjoy paired drinks from a variety of South Dakota vineyards and breweries while enjoying a sit down meal guided by two South Dakota Chefs. The Friday evening meal will include a nose to tail meal presentation by Drifters Head Chef, Uriah Steber, featuring a locally raised hog and discussion on utilizing all parts of the animal, as well as seasonal vegetables from local growers with a presentation showcasing Indigenous and Lakota cooking techniques by Matte Wilson from REDCO’s Sicangu Food Sovereignty Initiative, and dessert by local Pierre baker Beth Penrod of Flavorgasm. Tickets can also be purchased for those only able to attend the Nose to Tail Chef Experience for $75. Dinner starts at 6:30pm.

Other components of the event include networking time, vendor booths and meals using local foods. Those interested in having a vendor booth should visit the conference website.

Registration is now open. The full 2-day registration is $150/person (includes the Chef Experience). A single 1-day registration for Friday or Saturday is $80/person (does not include Chef Experience).  A student rate is available to currently enrolled college, technical institute and university students for $100 (2-days plus Chef Experience) or $50 (1-day only). Proof of enrollment is required. Registration includes general and breakout sessions, a light breakfast, snacks, and lunch.  Visit the Conference Website to register.

Registration is open until the close of business Oct. 21, after which registration cannot be guaranteed and will include an additional $25 fee if space is still available.

Professionals working to support food sovereignty in local tribal food systems are invited to apply for limited travel scholarship pool by Oct. 20. Application for scholarships is on the conference website.

The SDLFC is hosted by a collaboration of partners including Dakota Rural Action, the South Dakota Specialty Producers Association, SDSU Extension, USDA Rural DevelopmentSouth Dakota Agricultural Heritage Museum, and the Rosebud Economic Development Corporation (REDCO).

Anyone with an interest in local foods is encouraged to attend. Direct questions about the conference to Eowyn or Jordan or call 605-697-5204 x250. Follow the conference event on the S.D. Local Foods Facebook page.