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Food Alliance Midwest: Market Incentives for IPM

Grant Recipient:

Food Alliance Midwest
400 Selby Ave. Suite Y
St. Paul, MN 55102

Project Period:

April 1, 2008 - March 31, 2009

Principal Investigator:

Jim Ennis, Director Telephone: 651.265.3684 Fax: 651.228.1184

Description
Food Alliance Midwest (FAM) seeks to retain and provide services to an existing customer base in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan (47 farms/ranches and 2 processors/distributors), leading to further improvements in implementation of IPM and reductions in pesticide use and toxicity across 21,032 acres. FAM also plans to expand participation by certifying at least 24 new farms/ranches representing 24,000+ additional acres and 4 new processing/distribution facilities.

To recruit new certification customers, FAM pursues both indirect and direct outreach. To retain existing customers, FAM provides marketing support, technical assistance for continuous improvement, and new market opportunities through continued cultivation of relationships with ‘partners in change,’ including retail grocery stores, restaurant chains and food service companies. Food Alliance Midwest will organize workshop and networking events to provide opportunities for farmers and ranchers to hear from and meet with commercial food buyers. Food Alliance Midwest will also publish a bi-monthly newsletter on related marketing and agricultural topics.

Because food packers, processors, and distributors offer an important avenue of influence on food production practices through purchasing from Food Alliance Certified farms and ranches, promoting certification to other suppliers, and marketing certified products to their customers, Food Alliance Midwest seeks to leverage its growing network of relationships with these businesses to improve IPM and eliminate targeted pesticides.

FAM has previously received grant funding from EPA Region 8.

Project goals and objectives
1) Retain and provide services to an existing customer base in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan (47 farms/ranches and 2 processors/distributors), leading to further improvements in implementation of IPM and reductions in pesticide use and toxicity across 21,032 acres;
2) Expand participation by certifying at least 24 new farms/ranches representing 24,000+ additional acres and 4 new processing/distribution facilities.

Outcomes
1) Retain and provide services to an existing customer base in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan (47 farms/ranches and 2 processors/distributors), leading to further improvements in implementation of IPM and reductions in pesticide use and toxicity across 21,032 acres;
2) Expand participation by certifying at least 24 new farms/ranches representing 24,000+ additional acres and 4 new processing/distribution facilities.

Project Links
www.foodalliance.org

American Farmland Trust