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Minnesota Farmers' Market Association 

2020 MFMA Annual Conference Schedule


December 1

Wednesday, December 2

Thursday, December 3


December 4

Saturday, December 5

9 – 9:15 a.m.

Welcome & Announcements

Welcome & Announcements

Welcome & Announcements

Welcome & Announcements

Welcome & Announcements

9:15 – 10:15 a.m.


New Roots Farm Incubator

Join the leaders of the NRFI, a cooperative enterprise supporting new American farmers as they become leaders in the Fargo-Moorhead local food community. During this deep dive keynote, explore NRFI through a multi-perspective case study and interactive discussion facilitated by NRFI leaders. This session will include a presentation about a post-COVID food system by NPSAS Executive Director and NRFI founder Verna Kragnes, a panel featuring perspectives from NRFI growers and their experiences selling at the Red River Market, the Darshan Market in Fargo, and in *East Grand Forks*, and a discussion with organizations and local government stakeholders involved in the support landscape for NRFI. 

ABCs of Food Access Programs: Veggie Rx, PoP, SNAP EBT, Market Bucks, All The Other Bucks

These programs benefit community people who need access to good food, the vendors who sell that good food…and they all cost the market money to offer them. Learn from folks in the field making these programs successful.

Panel and Q&A

Samantha Barron

Marilyn Hofland

Nicole Bailey

Megan Hruby

Patricia Fenrick

David Nicholson

Keeping New Online Customers Beyond COVID-19

Lessons learned from 5 different markets, using 5 different online platforms: the pros, the cons, the costs.

Panel and Q&A

Colby Abasz

Ruth Arhelger

Kara Fletcher

Bonnie Hanna Powers

Sarah Larsen

Moderator Katie Myhre

MDA FSMA Produce Safety Rule Updates

Find out what produce vendors need to know with the new labeling requirements and more.


Alexandra Cortes

Lebo Moore

UME’s Tier 2 Cottage Foods Training

9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Separate $50 Registration Required: register here.

10:15 – 11:15 a.m.

KEYNOTE continued

New Roots Farm Incubator

ABCs of Food Access continued

Online Customers continued

Blazing Trails Through the Jungle of Food Licensing

Laws, rules, exclusions, exemptions, oh my! Everything you ever wanted to know about food regulation in MN.

Presenter and Q&A

Jane Jewett

UME’s Tier 2 Cottage Foods Training

11:15 – 11:20 a.m.






11:20 – 12 Noon

MFMA Programs

  • Insurance rate increase for 2021 
  • Public policy issues for 2021 Legislative session

Developing a Vendor Training Program in MN

Moderator Kirsten Bansen Weigle

Financial Snapshot of Farmers’ Market Food Hubs

Presenter Ryan Pesch

Blazing Trails

UME’s Tier 2 Cottage Foods Training

12 – 12:45 p.m.




LUNCH with the Commissioner!

Minnesota Department of Agriculture Thom Petersen


12:45 – 1:40 p.m.

MFMA Programs

  • VISTA!
  • Data Collection


James Harren

Kathy Zeman

Farm Direct Minnesota - A Facebook Page to Connect Farmers and People

Have you heard of the wildly popular Facebook page Farm Direct Minnesota? The page was started during the midst of the pandemic to connect Minnesota farmers with consumers. It now boasts over 52,000 followers! Join the initiator of Farm Direct Minnesota, Sazzy Calhoun, along with MFMA Communication Director Kim Guenther, for a lively session about Farm Direct Minnesota's Facebook and website, and lessons on connecting through social media.

MDA Toolkit

MDA will offer tips and resources relating to the Minnesota Grown Directory, the Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, and various grant opportunities available for farmers’ markets.


Emily Mehr

Gabbi Sparby

Karen Lanthier

Blazing Trails

MN Cottage Foods Producers Association

The MNCFPA is just about a year old. Find out how they are helping grow Minnesota’s cottage food industry, now 5,000 strong.

1:40 – 1:45 p.m.






1:45 – 2:40 p.m.

Getting Involved in the Legislative Process

Presenter Meagan Forbes

COVID-19 Market Check-In – Seriously, How Are You Doing??

Open Forum for everyone to share experiences & plans for 2021.

Sales Tax at Farmers’ Markets

Some (but not all) updates on sales tax es at farmers’ markets.

Presenter Kathy Zeman

Blazing Trails

Rejuvenating your Facebook Presence

Are you looking for some inspiration to make improvements to your business or market facebook page? Join MFMA Communication Director Kim Guenther in a discussion of ideas and tips to increase your business visibility, ways to improve your social media engagement, and new features in 2020. 

2:40 – 2:45 p.m.






6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday Night Social Hour - COVID Silver Linings Playbook!

Join Minnesota Cooks Program Manager Claudine Arndt with recipes developed from Minnesota farmers and chefs. Watch a few farmer/chef videos and enjoy a beverage as we connect and share recipes!

Then we'll open up to talk with folks about the silver linings discovered during the COVID challenges of 2020. Did you discover a new way to attract customers? New insight into marketing? New connections with the community? Of course, we'll be interested to hear a few nightmare stories too - misery loves company! 

Take advantage of a chance to share and connect with your fellow Minnesota market folks, let off a little steam and share some inspiration (and a recipe or three).

Friday Night Happy Hour – Craft Breweries and MN Farmers – plus Minnesota Beer Trivia!

Join Lakes and Legends Brewery co-founder Derrick Taylor as we look at the opportunities local growers have with MN's growing craft beer industry.

Hosted by Erik Heimark, co-owner of Maple Ridge Produce, we'll learn how Lakes and Legends has worked with 25+ different farmers to create beers and farmhouse ales in their Loring Park brewery that reflects flavors of Minnesota. Whether fruits, grains, herbs or flowers, Derrick will help us think 'outside the bottle' to collaborate with the growing craft brew industry.

Plus, he'll help host MN Beer Trivia, where we'll compete and answer MN beer questions. Prepare to be surprised!

Grab a brew and have some fun!

MFMA provides services, programs, and leadership that support and promote farmers' markets across Minnesota.

Engagement & Inclusion Director: Sina Pleggenkuhle /// /// (612) 695-6587 

Local Foodshed Database Manager: Maeve Mallozzi-Kelly /// /// (574) 310-5553

Executive Director: Kathy Zeman /// /// (507) 664-9446 

Minnesota Farmers' Market Association /// 9800 155th Street East, Nerstrand MN 55053 /// 


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