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Leadership For Local Foods

Local food is of growing interest all across North Dakota!

Local food is of growing interest all across North Dakota, and it’s not only producers and consumers who are taking notice, but many other entities like restaurants, supermarkets, marketing professionals, schools, and universities. To help bridge some of these relationships, and provide training, guidance, and support to local food leaders, the North Dakota State University Extension Service, through grant funding from North Central Regional – Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (NCR-SARE), provided nearly 20 “teams” an opportunity to participate in the Leadership for Local Foods program – a three year project providing in-person trainings along with financial support to build capacity, education, and marketing for local and regional food.

The project began in the fall of 2013 with a variety of interesting ideas from teams all across the state. To date, three trainings have been held and participants have enjoyed the opportunity to learn about many areas of local foods including:

  • How to Build Food Capacity at the Local and Regional Level
  • Food Safety & GAP Training
  • Local Food Distribution
  • Farm to Grocer, School & Restaurant
  • Telling Your Story - Marketing, Storytelling, & Social Media
  • Making it a Sustainable Business
  • Food Coops & Food Hubs
  • Finding the Resources & Funding

The projects will wrap up in fall of 2015, and this blog will be highlighting some of the success and work that has been accomplished to date. We hope you enjoy reading about these great people and the work they are doing to increase North Dakota’s capacity for local food.

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Demand for local food in rural communities is growing. Sustainable local food systems need to have strong community support to build and maintain the infrastructure needed to bring food from farm to fork. This website provides resources to support rural communities just beginning to build their community food systems as well as those whose local food systems are already strong. Resources are intended for farmers and producers, community organizations, and Extension Educators but may interest anyone in community and local foods. While this website was a partnership between Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota, most resources are applicable for any rural community.

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