The Upper Midwest Urban and Rural Ag Innovation Conference- 2024 Speakers & Schedule

SDSPA is hosting the 2024 Upper Midwest Urban and Rural Agriculture Innovation Conference (UMURAI) on Feb. 8-9, 2024 at Arrowwood Resort & Conference Center at Cedar Shore Oacoma, SD.

UMURAI is a premier gathering of agricultural professionals, researchers, and enthusiasts from across the region. We’re bringing together a stellar lineup of speakers and thought leaders to explore the latest trends, innovations, and best practices in agriculture.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of our distinguished speakers and their captivating topics:

Blake Pulse, Graduate Research Assistant at SDSU Extension, will facilitate a “Listening Session: Building Resilience in the South Dakota Local Food System.” Join the conversation and contribute your insights to help strengthen our local food systems and enhance resilience in the face of challenges.

Dr. Angela K. Jackson, Owner of Prairiesun Organic Farm, will share her expertise on “Organic Farming Programs, Policies, and Opportunities.” Gain valuable insights into the world of organic agriculture, including current programs, policies, and the myriad opportunities available in this growing sector.

Bryan Mitchell, representing Western Dakota Technical College, will discuss “Innovating Agriculture through Technical Education.” Discover how technical education plays a crucial role in driving innovation and advancement in the agricultural industry, and learn about the exciting opportunities available for aspiring ag professionals.

Kristine Lang, Assistant Professor and Extension Consumer Horticulture Specialist at SDSU, will enlighten us on “Alternative Growing Mediums.” Learn about innovative approaches to cultivation that maximize yield and sustainability.

Jared Lukens-Black, from Budding Moon Farm, will share insights on “Overcoming Barriers to Healthy, Local Food.” Discover strategies to promote accessibility and affordability of nutritious, locally sourced produce.

Jonalyn Burt, Product Technician at Johnny’s Seeds, will delve into “The Basics of Mushroom Cultivation.” From foundational biology to practical techniques, gain a comprehensive understanding of mushroom production methods.

Beth and Nathan Corymb, co-founders of Meadowlark Hearth, will discuss “How Biodynamic Practices Aid Business Development.” Discover the holistic approach of biodynamic farming and its potential to drive sustainable business growth.

Alina Krone-Hedman, Urban Conservation Education Coordinator with Minnehaha Conservation District, will present “Developing Opportunities for Urban Producers.” Explore the creation and implementation of community programs to support urban agriculture initiatives.

Each session promises to be enlightening, engaging, and packed with valuable insights for agricultural professionals, researchers, and enthusiasts alike.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to connect with industry experts, expand your knowledge, and network with fellow ag innovators. Reserve your spot today and be part of the conversation shaping the future of agriculture!

Learn more about session topics, speakers, and registration information by visiting our website:

Conference Agenda

We look forward to seeing you at the UMURAI Conference 2024!