Category Archives: Uncategorized

Local food and fun at the Ohio Fish & Shrimp Festival

Celebrate the bounty of Ohio’s local food at the Ohio Fish and Shrimp Festival.  Sept. 14th, 15th and 16th, 2012.  There will be music and lots of food, activities for the kids and the facinating and educational tour of FreshWater Farms hatchery!

Festivities kick off Friday evening with live music, mouth-watering seafood selections from the Freshwater Farms food booth as well a variety of food options from other vendors, games and activities for the whole family. There will be freshly harvested shrimp from multiple farmers for sale beginning Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m. HURRY-They sell out early! (Last year we sold out in TWO HOURS!).

More info  on their website: Ohio Fish & Shrimp Festival.

INVITE: Ohio Grown: Local Food Creating Local Opportunities

Come learn about changing policies to support local food economies, local food financing, and more on August 9 in Columbus with US Deputy Agriculture Secretary Kathleen Merrigan.

You are invited!

Ohio Grown: Local Food Creating
Local Opportunities

With Keynote Speaker Kathleen Merrigan,
U.S. Deputy Secretary of Agriculture

Come learn about changing policies to support local food
economies, local food financing, scaling up, and more.

Thursday, August 9, 2012
9:00am – 5:00pm
Registration begins at 8:30am

The Ohio State University
Fawcett Center
2400 Olentangy River Rd.
Columbus, Ohio

Please register for the event by contacting Ohio State University
Extension at (614) 292-7875 or

This event is free and open to the public
Locally-sourced lunch will be available for $15/person

Space available for materials or display of your organization; please request in your RSVP. Space is limited. First Come, First Served.

Tentative Agenda


Time Session
8:30-9:00am Registration
9:00-9:15am Welcome and Opening Remarks
9:15-10:00am Keynote Speaker:
Kathleen Merrigan, USDA Deputy Secretary of Agriculture

Increasing Access to Locally Grown and Healthy Food
10:00-11:00am Why Local? The Potential of a Local Food Economy—How does local food fit into the future of Ohio’s economy? Can local food create jobs and opportunities for rural and urban Americans alike? What will it take to make sustainable agriculture a viable career and profitable business opportunity for Ohio farmers?
11:00-11:15am Networking/Break
11:15-12:15pm Good Food Financing—Whether a farm business, a grain mill, a food hub, or a school, the future of local food must be rooted in sound economics and viable business models. Finance experts and practitioners will share their wisdom.
12:15-1:15pm Working Lunch provided by Ohio State University Extension
Ohio grown to the extent possible.
1:15-1:30pm Networking/Break
1:30-2:30pm Making the Local Food Connection—This panel will feature individuals from Ohio and beyond who are involved in institutional purchasing and others who will explain how they are tackling the challenges associated with the aggregation, distribution, and infrastructure of local food.
2:30-2:45pm Networking/Break
2:45-3:45pm Changing Policy To Support Local Food Economies—From local zoning and regional planning to federal food and agriculture laws, policy can help or hinder continued growth of a local food economy. A few of Ohio’s leaders will discuss their efforts to change policy to support local food economies.
3:45-4:45pm Building on Best Practices & Looking Forward—Ohioans who are making local work will share lessons learned, best practices, and lead a discussion on what it will take to grow Ohio’s local food economy in the years to come.

Networking Reception with Ohio-Made Beverages
Additional details to follow


Investing in Local Business – New Book

You shop locally, you buy locally, so why don’t you invest locally? Why not invest your assets in your favorite small business just down the street from where you live? Truth is, it’s not as easy as it should be, says Amy Cortese, a veteran business journalist and author of the new book Locavesting, which takes a look at the local-investing movement and how individual investors can participate.


See the article in Mintlife Blog

Food Safety Listening Session for Produce Growers

FreshProduceOhio producers of fresh fruits and vegetables have an opportunity to attend a Listening Session to hear about the various groups who are working to address the proposed changes to how local food is produced in Ohio.  This listening session provides the opportunity for growers to hear from experts in the food safety arena.  Speaker will include researchers for Ohio Agriculture Research and Development Center (OARDC), The Ohio Produce Growers and Marketers Association (OPGMA), and Dr. Karl Kolb, Chief Science Officer, The High Sierra Group.  Participants will hear from these experts information about current regulations and the proposed changes to these regulations.  Information will also be shared about what Ohio is doing to ensure the sustainability of Ohio’s produce growers.  The Listening Session will be held on Oct. 19, 2009 from 9:00 a.m. to noon at the Ohio Department of Agriculture in Reynoldsburg.  For more information please contact Christie Welch, Farmers’ Market Specialist with the Ohio State University South Centers via e-mail or via telephone to 740-289-2071 ext. 234.

Food Safety Listening Session

Oct. 19th from 9:00 a.m. to noon
at Ohio Dept. of Agriculture
8995 E Main St
Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

September thoughts on Harvest

It’s been a while since I posted. Lots happening here in Columbus. 4 Seasons City Farm is deep in the midst of planning the Fall Harvest Festival. Sept 26 at Mound and Carpenter (the Olde Town East part of Columbus), Then a few days later will be a canning workshop on tues the 29th at Central Community House at Main and Champion. Limited group for hands on learning with Susan Shockey from Cooperative Extension. If interested call Karen to sign up for this or other TBA workshops. MORPC is being asked to find funding for more experts such as Susan to teach both water bath and pressure canning techniques. Did you know that you can even can a turkey this way? Imagine if people in the inner city could buy two at 79 cents a pound and have meat all winter. Even if the electric were to go out. It would still be good. Sure wish people were more prepared for disasters. So much food was lost last year during the big storm as well as those on the gulf from the hurricanes. Crews could plan ahead to have 2 ton trucks and generators to save so much during those extreme times. I expect more to happen. Get prepared. Know your neighbors. Work together. Well got to go. Coffee house is closing. More soon. Kareng

Defining Local Food

What does “local food” mean to you? As Bear wrote in SlowFood Columbus recently.  As big food industry scrambles to redefine their products as “local”, we must keep in mind the values we embrace as we support local food.

The locavore movement arose at a time when “local” meant not just “from nearby” but also “made by our neighbors,” “sustainable” and “not industrial.” As concepts go, it was the perfect storm of progressive foodie goodness: in one word it connoted fresh taste, a low carbon footprint and good farming practices, and appealing social values.

– Bear, Slow Food Columbus, What is Local Food?

Farmland Preservation Conference

I’m a Postin’ Fool today. There was so much to share that concerns local food in my emails. I’ve had good visits with the Madison County Chamber of Commerce, Brian Williams and a number of other movers and shakers. Many of whom will be at this event. Check it out.

SAVE THE DATE – 10th Annual Ohio Farmland Preservation Summit – 11/5/9

On November 5, 2009, the tenth annual Ohio Farmland Preservation Summit will take place at the new Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center on the Ohio State University campus. For this landmark anniversary, we offer exciting and information-packed breakout sessions to inform and invigorate. There will also be exhibition space and a fresh produce market in the afternoon. To help us celebrate a decade of gatherings, The Ohio State University President, Gordon Gee, will give a welcome and USDA Deputy Secretary, Kathleen Merrigan, will provide an address via video.

You often hear that farmland provides services beyond food and fiber production. The morning plenary will begin by a panel addressing the question: How can we begin to value these services such as carbon sequestration and nutrient management, and what selling and trading of these services mean for farmland protection? The afternoon session focuses on the role of farmland protection in balancing growth and restoring prosperity to Ohio.

Breakout sessions are available on a variety of topics ranging from the basics of preserving the farm business, adapting to climate change through soil management, using surveys to gauge support for farmland protection, results from the latest census, to food policy and Ohio farmland.

WHAT: 10th Annual Ohio Farmland Preservation Summit: Planting the Seeds of Future Prosperity

WHERE: Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, Ohio State University

DATE: November 5, 2008

TIME: 9:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. (approximate)

For additional information about the conference, go to or contact Jody Fife, Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Office of Farmland Preservation, at 614-728-6210 or It is expected that registration materials will be available in early September.

Planning committee organizations: Agriculture & Resource Law Program, OSU; American Farmland Trust; Center for Farmland Policy Innovation, OSU; Countryside Conservancy; Denison University; Marketing Division, ODA; Office of Farmland Preservation, ODA; Ohio Farm Bureau Federation; Ohio County Commissioners Association; Ohio Environmental Council; Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts; Ohio Planning Conference; Ohio Township Association; Otterbein University; and Western Reserve Land Conservancy.

Jill Clark, PhD

Director, Center for Farmland Policy Innovation

Dept. of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics

The Ohio State University

Agricultural Administration Bldg., 337

2120 Fyffe Rd.

Columbus, OH 43201

614.247.6479 (p)

614.292.0078 (f)

Community Gardens are spreading. It’s a Gardenmonium

Community garden is seeing it’s renaissance this year. I recently attended the ACGA national conference and was really impressed with their mission and the quality of the lectures that were presented. I joined officially and have decided to host a dinner party at Cafe Bella as a way to show my support. Stay tuned for details. Drop me a line if you would be interested in attending.
Got this from OEFFA. Hope you find it useful.
*Community Garden Publication Now Available *
AERO has released a new publication on community gardening. Building Community Gardens in Montana (PDF/10.5MB) contains tools, examples, resources and strategies for developing, funding and leading a community garden project in Montana. Based on the experience of Helena VISTA Volunteer organizers – this manual offers insight on how to approach and work with a broad array of community members, government officials and private businesses to develop community gardens.