Good Food on Every Table!

FamilyFarmed is a non-profit organization committed to expanding the production, marketing and distribution of locally grown and responsibly produced food, in order to enhance the social, economic, and environmental health of our communities.

Meet the Buyers at Indiana Horticultural Congress!

Meet the Buyers: Indiana Fruit and Vegetable Growers to Meet with Wholesale Buyers at Indiana Horticultural Congress January 18!

Buyers from Basic Roots Community Foods, Caito Foods, Chicago Public Schools, Downtown Farmstand, Goodness Greeness, Indianapolis Fruit Company, Local Folks Foods, Pet Lovers Organic, Ray Rupple Farm, and Whole Foods Market want to Expand Indiana Produce Purchasing.

CHICAGO – A wide variety of local food buyers are set to meet with fruit and vegetable growers at the Indiana Horticultural Congress in Indianapolis on Tuesday, January 18th.

Meet the Buyers is a great opportunity to increase the sales of food for Indiana farmers,” says Liz Maynard, Purdue Horticulture Extension specialist.  “We hope growers will take advantage of this opportunity.  In the long term this can substantially grow our specialty crop industry. This workshop is a great complement to other sessions at the Congress, including programs about field and high tunnel production practices.”

To help create new markets for Indiana growers, FamilyFarmed.org has developed a full afternoon of programming at the Horticultural Congress. “Wholesale buyers are clamoring for more produce from Indiana farms,” says Jim Slama, President of FamilyFarmed.org. “We will be offering growers educational programming and networking to meet the demand.”

The programming is a collaboration of FamilyFarmed.org, Purdue University Extension and Hoosier Organic Marketing Education (HOME).  Cissy Bowman, Program Director of HOME, as well as long-time organic farmer and accredited certifying agent knows and stresses the importance of having the proper, legal and up-to-date information on entering and maintaining the quality assurance and controls for selling food into wholesale markets.

The programming will begin with a Wholesale Success workshop that will inform farmers about what buyers are looking for including best practices in food safety, post harvest handling, and packing. Participating producers will receive a free ($50 value) copy of Wholesale Success: A Farmer’s Guide to Selling, Postharvest Handling, and Packing Produce. Developed by FamilyFarmed.org, this 256 page four-color publication is a leading source of information to help farmers scale up and sell into wholesale channels. Following this, there will be a question and answer session with growers and buyers and then the opportunity for farmers to “Meet the Buyers” and have valuable face time with these representatives.

The Meet the Buyers reception will feature buyers from Basic Roots Community Foods, Caito Foods, Chicago Public Schools, Downtown Farmstand, Goodness Greeness, Indianapolis Fruit Company, Local Folks Foods, Pet Lovers Organic, Ray Rupple Farm, and Whole Foods.

Whole Foods Market and FamilyFarmed.org will also share their recently released Request for Information application at the conference. To learn more about this opportunity for Midwestern growers looking to sell into Whole Foods Market stores in Illinois and to access the application go to: www.familyfarmed.org/wholefoodsmarket.

For more information about the Indiana Horticultural Congress, go to: www.inhortcongress.org.

About FamilyFarmed.org

FamilyFarmed.org is a non-profit organization that has worked for the past decade to build local food systems and create markets for family farmers.  Its mission is to expand the production, marketing and distribution of locally grown and responsibly produced food, in order to enhance the social, economic and environmental health of our communities.  The FamilyFarmed EXPO is the leading trade and consumer show connecting Midwest food producers with trade buyers and consumers, and will be held in Chicago March 17-19, 2011.

Fore more information, contact James Pirovano of FamilyFarmed.org at 708-763-9920.