News

2017 Legislative Issues Update

March 6, 2017  

Where are they now? How can I have my voice heard? Stay up-to-date with the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition’s policy platform right here. Our infographics are updated regularly to provide you with the most up-to-date information. Not quite sure how to advocate for an issue? No problem. Contact…

An Evening with the Commissioner

March 2, 2017  

Would you like the chance to meet the new the WV Commissioner of Agriculture, Kent Leonhardt and Dep. Commissioner Joe Hatton? Well, you’re in luck! We’re hosting an evening with them on March 14th at the VFW Post 7048 in Fairmont! The evening will include an opportunity to speak about local…

West Virginia marks Local Food, Farms Day

CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition, West Virginia Farmers Market Association and West Virginia Farmers Cooperative got resolutions passed in the House and the Senate to make Feb. 23 Local Food and Farms Day at the Legislature. Farmers from around the state visited to support the effort…

Job Announcement: WV Farmers Market Association Project Coordinator

March 1, 2017  

WVFMA Project Coordinator Job Description Serve as staff for the WVFMA Executive Director Assist coordination with WVFMA Board meeting, conference and planning agendas. B. Attend all regular and special meetings of the WVFMA Board of Directors. C. Support all WVFMA Committees: grants, communication, and policy. Assist with planning and execution…

Press Release: WV SUN Helps Ag Producers Go Solar

March 1, 2017  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 14, 2017   Contact: Ben Delman 202-888-3602 ben@communitypowernetwork.org   Co-op forms to help Agricultural Producers go solar Charleston, WV – WV SUN, an organization that represents West Virginia’s community of solar supporters, today launched an effort to help agricultural producers go solar. The goal of this program…

Blog Share: Want public support for reform? Don’t say “food stamps,” “policy,” or “public health”

February 22, 2017   Tags:

Christine Grillo “We don’t say the word ‘environment,’” says Mark Winne about his food systems work in rural regions. “If we have to bring it up, we talk about ‘clean air’ and ‘clean water.’” The cultural schisms in the U.S.— rural versus urban, liberal versus conservative—are hardly new. So what’s the…

Farmers take issues to lawmakers

Max Garland, Staff writer Small farmers and farming organizations are meeting with state lawmakers today on various bills that could jump-start local farming businesses, ranging from processing more rabbit meat to tax credits for food bank donations. The third annual Local Food and Farms Day, beginning at 9 a.m. at…

Local Food and Farms Day set

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, the West Virginia Farmers Market Association, and the West Virginia Farmers Cooperative will host the 3rd annual Local Food and Farms Day at the Capitol on Feb. 23 at 9 a.m. It will be held in the Upper House Rotunda at the State…

Conference looks to grow next generation of farmers

Max Garland, Staff writer West Virginia won’t realize its full farming potential if the next generation isn’t a part of it. That’s what Spencer Moss, executive director of the nonprofit West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition, said about the state’s quiet farming economy, at a time when economic diversification is…

2017 Policy Platform

  Rabbit to Restaurants: Reducing Economic Barriers for Rabbit Producers in West Virginia Have you noticed more rabbit meat available at your community farmers market or consignment store? A rule change approved by the Secretary of State in Summer 2015 made producing rabbit more economically viable for farmers in West…

3rd Annual 2017 West Virginia Local Food and Farms Day @ The Capitol

January 30, 2017   Tags:

Join members of the food and farm community at the West Virginia State Capitol on February 23, 2017 to show your support for good food and agriculture policies. Your presence at the legislature on this day represents the diverse initiatives and support behind this movement. Let’s share our stories and communicate the impact of this statewide food…

The Coalition is Hiring an AmeriCorps VISTA

December 14, 2016  

2016 VISTA Position Announcement The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition is hiring an AmeriCorps VISTA for a February 2017 start date. This position is an amazing opportunity to become ingrained in the local food and agriculture movement in West Virginia. Position Description The Coalition would like to offer an…

Event Recap: WVIFN Farm Visit at Refresh Appalachia

October 25, 2016  

The WV Incubator Farm Network (WVIFN) traveled near and far to attend the Network’s very first farm visit and strategy session at one of several Refresh Appalachia sites in Huntington, West Virginia. While the morning fog burned off, the participants sat in bright red, upholstered church pews inside a large…

WVIFN Farm Visit and Strategy Session: Refresh Appalachia

October 3, 2016  

Join the West Virginia Incubator Farm Network (WVIFN) for the Network’s very first incubator farm visit and strategy session at Refresh Appalachia in Huntington, West Virginia on Wednesday, October 12th @ 9AM. We’ll begin the morning with a farm tour of Refresh Appalachia’s incubator farm to learn more about the program. Following…

Food and Farm Coalition gets a USDA grant

October 1, 2016   Tags:

Sarah Plummer West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition in Fayetteville has received more than $460,000 to create economic opportunities for farmers and local food sellers while improving local access to fresh, healthy food. U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack awarded more than $56 million in grants to strengthen local and regional…

Food and farm initiative growing

August 16, 2016  

By Beth Christian Broschart The Parsons Advocate DAVIS – The Highland Market in Davis has always offered high quality fresh ingredients, but now they have installed a walk in cooler/freezer to add additional storage for fresh meats, fruits and vegetables. This spring, they installed a certified kitchen space and are…

Event RECAP: Summers County Foodshed Dinner

July 28, 2016  

We had the pleasure of meeting with Summers County farmers, as well as some folks from Alderson at our foodshed meeting in Hinton on July 25th.  The good people at Chestnut Revival were able to cater a dinner for us on an evening they would normally be closed, and they…

2017 Official Legislative Issues Ballot

July 13, 2016  

As a result of the collaborative and inspired conversations at our Annual Advocacy Training and Workshop in June, the Coalition presents you with our 2017 Official Legislative Issues Ballot. Vote for one of the three legislative priorities here! Don’t have a google account? Vote here!  

Farm to Table Breakfast Benefit

July 8, 2016  

Please Join Hudson Farms, Starlings Coffee & Provisions, and the WV Food & Farm Coalition as we raise funding for farmers effected by the June flooding. Sat July 16 8AM – 11AM Starlings Coffee & Provisions 1599 Washington St E, Charleston, WV Check out this $25 Farmhouse Buffet Menu! Local…

Event Recap: 2016 Annual Advocacy Training and Workshop

June 28, 2016  

On Tuesday, June 14th the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition (WVFFC) welcomed over 30 people to the Annual Advocacy Training and Workshop in Summersville, West Virginia. A diverse group of farmers, food business owners, service providers, nonprofit organizations, food bank representatives, and community members from across the state  spent…

Meet Our New Director of Development and Programs, Brandon Nida

June 16, 2016  

Getting to know Brandon Nida. Where are you from? I’m from Salt Rock, WV Where were you before joining the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition? I was in Baltimore for two years before joining the WVFFC, working on economic development and alternative finance issues. Before that I was moving…

Meet Our New AmeriCorps VISTA, Cody Addison

June 16, 2016  

Getting To Know Cody Addison. Where are you from? Richlands, Virginia As someone that grew up just outside West Virginia, what is one word you would use to describe the state?  Curvy! Where were you before joining the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition? In college at Radford University, studying music….

A New Chapter for the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition

April 25, 2016  

April 25, 2016 A new chapter is set to begin for the West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition. After two years of visionary leadership Executive Director Elizabeth Spellman will be stepping down this summer 2016 to facilitate a transition to a new Executive Director. We wish to extend our sincerest…

Food & Farm Feature: What’s going on in the field?

April 18, 2016  

From Junkyard to Social Enterprise: Hudson Farms Mobile Market is Removing Barriers for Senior Communities to Access Locally Grown Food When I first began my service as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition in November, I began to draw a “kinship chart” to fully comprehend…

Event Recap: “MEAT Your Profit Potential: Eggs, Poultry and Rabbit Products”

April 4, 2016  

  Farmers from across the eastern region of West Virginia traveled to the Summersville Arena and Conference Center on Monday, March 28th for the fourth Niche Meat Processing Training organized by the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition’s Meat Working Group, the Value Chain Cluster Initiative (VC2), and Natural Capital…

“The Hub Club’s” March 2016 Site Visit: KISRA in Dunbar, West Virginia

March 30, 2016  

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition’s Aggregation and Distribution Working Group, also known as the Hub Club, visited the Kanawha Institute for Social Research & Action (KISRA) in Dunbar, West Virginia on March 23rd, 2016 for an interactive site visit and discussion. The participants also discussed logistical planning of…

WVFFC’s 2016 Annual Advocacy Training

March 29, 2016  

  The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is hosting its 2016 Annual Advocacy Training. 10:00AM-3PM at the Summerville, Armory (Lunch included) We’ll be focusing on how state and national policies impact food and farm communities everyday! In the morning, Stephanie Tyree of the West Virginia Community Development Hub will…

March 28th Niche Meat Training Series: Meat Your Profit Potential: Eggs, Rabbit and Poultry Products

March 9, 2016  

Join the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition’s Meat Working Group and the Value Chain Cluster Initiative in Summersville, WV on March 28th for our fourth and final training in our Niche Meat Training Series. This day long, interactive training will provide information that will assist participants in expanding into new markets…

Food & Farm Feature: What’s going on in the field?

March 3, 2016  

Making Farm to Institution Work at the VA Medical Center in Martinsburg, WV Barbara E. Hartman MS, RDN, LD, a longtime supporter of the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, generously donated time away from her busy day as Chief of Nutrition and Food Service at the VA Medical Center in Martinsburg, West…

Recap: Local Foods Day 2016: Day At The Legislature

January 27, 2016  

On January 26, more than 80 supporters of local food and agriculture attended the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition’s Local Foods Day 2016: a Day at the Legislature! During the morning hours, supporters arrived at the Capitol to speak with legislators about food and farm issues including the WV…

Food & Farm Day of Action

January 27, 2016   Tags:

On Tuesday February 23rd, we’re asking you to gather with us again at the West Virginia Capitol to speak with legislators about putting these policy issues on their committee’s agendas. The only way that legislators will know how important these food and farm policies are to creating a more resilient…

Op-ed: Our Home Canning Tradition Could Conserve Food, Increase Sales

January 17, 2016   Tags:

By: Adam Taylor As winter continues, many West Virginia pantries are packed with the fruits of labor from the fall harvest. Green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, pickles, sauerkraut and many other artisan products are tightly sealed in glass mason jars and marked with a date. Canning is part of this state’s…

News Article: West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition presents legislative agenda

By Pamela Pritt For The Fayette Tribune CHARLESTON — The W.Va. Farm and Food Coalition presented its legislative agenda to the Joint Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development Tuesday morning, as lawmakers continue to hold interim meetings prior to the legislative session. Adam Taylor, project coordinator, said the coalition has…

Local Foods Day 2016: Day at the Legislature

January 5, 2016  

The 2016 Local Foods Day at the Legislature is a day when those involved in the local foods and agriculture sector (farmers, restaurant owners/managers, consumers, farmers market shoppers, grocery stores, etc) can rally together and show support for the local foods movement at the capitol!  The day is designed to encourage more than 100…

Op-ed: A Few Changes Would Enable WV to Buy from its Own Growers

November 23, 2015   Tags:

Sunday, November 15, 2015 Joey Aloi is former Appalachian transition fellow for a farm-to-hospital project with Charleston Area Medical Center and a board member for the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition. West Virginia local-food advocates have long heard the refrain that, of our state’s $7 billion in food purchases, only…

The North Central Foodshed: Meet & Greet

November 20, 2015   Tags:

WV Food & Farm Coalition staff traveled to Morgantown for the Coalition’s very first State of Local Food: Meet & Greet. We organized the event to encourage the development and growth of the North Central foodshed by providing a space for the foodshed community to come together. As a statewide…

Good luck to our outgoing AmeriCorps VISTA, and hello to our new one!

November 13, 2015   Tags:

On November 20th, Garnet Bruell will complete his two years of service with us as an AmeriCorps VISTA! Garnet’s worked with us on all manner of things in the past two years, from buyer-grower expos, ARC tours, numerous grants and grant reports, website development, newsletters, conferences… the list goes on! You’ve probably…

Op-ed: How Can We Divert Leftover Produce to Needy Tables?

October 30, 2015   Tags:

Wednesday, October 21, 2015 Jean Simpson is executive director at Manna Meal, in Charleston, and Spencer Moss is communications director for the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition. Nationally, about 6 billion pounds of fresh produce go unharvested or unsold every year. When farmers consider donating excess food to those…

What’s Next for West Virginia Food Hubs?

October 22, 2015   Tags:

With the Fall 2015 National Good Food Network Food Hub Training under their belts, what’s new for some of West Virginia’s food hubs, and what are their goals for the next year? Panorama At The Peak–A Local Foods Restaurant Website. While not technically a food hub, Panorama sources from a large amount of…

Report: Food Hub Training

October 21, 2015   Tags:

On September 10th, 2015, over 35 people gathered at the Alderson Community Center for an Emerging and Early Stage Food Hub Development Workshop presented by the National Good Food Network. It was the culmination of a year’s worth of tours & trainings by an array of West Virginia food hubs in various…

Rabbit & Poultry Products Workshop

October 20, 2015   Tags:

  Did you know that you can process both rabbits & poultry on your farm and sell that meat at a farmers market?This is a new opportunity thanks to a series of exemptions passed by the state of West Virginia. On October 20, 2015, producers came from across the state to…

WVU College of Law Class Focuses on West Virginia Local Food Policy Issues

October 6, 2015   Tags:

This fall, students at the WVU College of Law are putting their skills to work on a variety of local food policy issues facing West Virginia. How did this happen, and what are they working on? Alison Peck, law professor, thought her Agriculture & Food Law class would be a good opportunity to…

Travel Blog: Attending the Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo in Nashville, Day 1

October 4, 2015   Tags:

This is part 1 in a series by Garnet Bruell, an AmeriCorps VISTA with the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition VISTA. As a Registered Dietitian, Garnet is attending the 2015 Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo in Nashville, Tennessee.  Since 2013, I’ve been a member of the Hunger & Environmental Nutrition…

Research: How do severed mineral estates affect West Virginia’s farmers?

October 1, 2015   Tags:

We worked with Vermont Law School graduate Sarah Danly, to explore options for farmers with severed mineral rights, and today we’d like to share her research, “Impacts of Severed Mineral Estates on Agriculture Surface Owners in West Virginia.” This research is the product of conversations and partnerships with many long-time advocates and…

$6000 Available to Fund Mobile Farmers Market in Greater Kanawha Valley (Counties: Boone, Clay, Fayette, Kanawha, Lincoln and Putnam)

September 16, 2015  

Update 10/22/2015: We are waiving the Letter of Intent requirement for applications. If you are interested, please submit your full application by Monday, November 9th.  Charleston, W.Va. (September 17, 2015) — Are you ready to see more fresh produce for sale in the Kanawha Valley? Today, The West Virginia Food and Farm…

Will You Be The Alderson Food Hub’s Newest AmeriCorps Volunteer?

September 8, 2015   Tags:

This is a great position with the Alderson Community Food Hub / Green Grocer… read on! Alderson Community Food Hub AmeriCorps Volunteer    One year position, beginning in September 2015 Responsibilities Build producer network and expanded outlets for local product Encourage broad community participation in Food Hub programs Leverage volunteers…

Report: Alleghany Meats Tour

September 3, 2015   Tags:

On August 28th, 2015, over a dozen individuals and organizations met at Alleghany Meats in Monterey, Virginia, to learn how the 3-year-old slaughter/processing/packing facility works. The tour group was led through each step of the business, which is a USDA-Inspected Facility. This tour was made possible by a grant from the Central Appalachian…

Join Us At The Statewide Policy Summit in Charleston, Sept 14 & 15.

September 1, 2015   Tags:

Do you want to see more local food wins during the 2016 legislative session? Join us September 14th & 15th at the Cultural Center in Charleston. Our policy proposal is up for discussion for Our Children Our Future to take on, and your participation and votes will be what makes that…

Food Hub Mini-Grant Updates

August 27, 2015   Tags:

Back in June, we were able to grant funding to five organizations working to aggregate and sell locally grown produce thanks to the Babcock Foundation and the Appalachian Foodshed Project. So, how are these groups doing? We’re happy to share some the initial data from a few of these groups, and pull…

Guest Blog: Hunting and Gathering in the ‘Wood

August 26, 2015   Tags:

Note: This piece originally appeared in The Nicholas Chronicle. It is reprinted here with permission from the author, Susan Johnson.   Last December, Foodland abruptly closed down its Richwood grocery putting twenty or so folks out of work weeks before Christmas and leaving residents with no place to buy fresh meats…

Report: Webinar Highlights Mobile Farmers Market Progress

August 19, 2015   Tags:

On August 11th, we held a webinar highlighting the great work being done at two Mobile Farmers Markets: Grow Ohio Valley in Wheeling, and My Mobile Market in Williamson. This is the second season of operation for both of these markets, and both markets had great experiences to share. At…

WVU’s Foodlink Hiring Food Justice Outreach Coordinators

August 17, 2015   Tags:

Are you looking for a job that will benefit West Virginia’s local food system? We’ve just got word that our friends at WVU Foodlink are hiring three Food Justice Outreach Coordinators. See the job description below! Food Justice Outreach Coordinator WV FOODLINK Department of Geology & Geography West Virginia University Description W​V…

WV Mobile Markets Will Share Project Details on August 12 Webinar

July 30, 2015   Tags:

Charleston, West Virginia, July 30, 2015 – You may have shopped at a farmers market, but have you ever shopped at a Mobile Market? On August 12th at 11am, the public is invited to learn about how Mobile Markets are bringing fresh produce to underserved areas of West Virginia. The…

Our 2016 Policy Priorities!

July 9, 2015   Tags:

It may be the middle of summer, but the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is gearing up to represent West Virginia farmers in the 2016 legislative session. In June, we had the Local Food Policy & Advocacy Training, and then a survey gathered your input on potential issues. The results are in!…

Farm to Restaurant Webinar Focuses on Best Practices, Price Calculator

“I’d love to buy local – but it’s too expensive!” We’ve all heard this before, but as it turns out, it’s not always true – especially for restaurants. On June 16th, Anthony Flaccavento from Rural Scale was the featured guest of a webinar hosted by the West Virginia Food & Farm…

2015 Food Hub Mini-Grants Awarded

Mount Hope, West Virginia — Are you ready to eat local food? Five “Food Hub” organizations in West Virginia have been awarded mini-grants by the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition that will help them expand their work, increasing the amount of locally grown produce and furthering economic development. The…

Food and Farm Practitioners Receive Advocacy Training

June 19, 2015   Tags:

Over 50 local food system practitioners and advocates convened for the WV Food and Farm Coalition’s second annual Advocacy Training in Summersville on June 16, 2015 to discuss a variety of challenges they face related to building and sustaining food and farm businesses and increasing the public’s access to local…

WVU Graduate Thesis Profiles West Virginia Farms

May 28, 2015   Tags:

Rachel Yoke recently graduated from WVU with an MS in Journalism, and has released her thesis, Hope & Hard Work: Farming in the Mountain State, the product of two years exploring farming and food production in West Virginia. Yoke focuses in on an array of topics: Appalachian Engineering shows a family farm “in the small town of Lost Creek,…

Meat Processor Training Covers Employment, Equipment, Value-Adding

Meat Processing businesses are a potential growth area in West Viginia’s local food economy. With a market consisting of wild game in addition to more niche meat produced on West Virginia pastures, the May 22nd training continued where the first “Meat Your Profit Potential” workshop left off. The day featured Chris Fuller, formerly…

Harvard Food Policy & Law Clinic will Attend June 16 Policy & Advocacy Training in Summersville

May 20, 2015   Tags:

We have exciting news for West Virginia food policy enthusiasts! The Harvard Food Law & Policy Clinic will be presenting at our Local Food Policy & Advocacy Training on June 16th at the Summersville Conference Center. Their attendance kicks off their 2015 partnership with West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition stakeholder groups to advance state food…

WV Food Hubs Gain Momentum At Heart & Hand Workshop

On April 22nd, 35 people from over 20 organizations involved in Food Hubs in their communities met at Heart & Hand’s Market Place in Philippi, where the atmosphere was one of problem solving, information sharing, and camaraderie around one single goal: creating a new way for West Virginians to buy…

Public Invited to Attend Local Food Policy & Advocacy Training & Create Legislative Goals

May 4, 2015   Tags:

Summersville, West Virginia, May 4th, 2015 – How can West Virginia see more success in the local food movement? One answer is by changing food policy. On June 16th, at the Summersville Conference Center, the public is invited to learn how to get involved in the leglslative process, and create…

Feedback Requested: Farm Incubator Model For West Virginia

When and where will West Virginia grow the next generation of farmers? To answer those questions, we are working with Downstream Strategies to investigate the feasibility of the Sprouting Farms & Food Production Center, which will be based in the Greenbrier Valley. The Center could combine a learning and land-leasing program, a…

Clarification For Poultry Exemption Rule

April 6, 2015   Tags:

The Meat Working Group received this clarification from Dr Robert Pitts, DVM, regarding the 2014 poultry exemption. Download the Clarification (200kb) Find the details below: Producer/Grower 20,000 Poultry Limit Exemption Requirements The producer/grower slaughters/process no more than 20,000 healthy birds of his/her own raising, on his/her premises in a calendar year. The…

Mobile Markets Provide Local Food Access & Economic Opportunity in West Virginia

If you wanted to buy fresh local food, where would you go? In many communities in West Virginia, the answer is farmers markets – but there is growing potential for a new ‘mobile’ market model that can sell local food to consumers in low-access West Virginia communities. The My Mobile Market operated by the…

Join The Eastern Panhandle Local Food Buyer-Grower Directory

Are you a local producer or purchaser (such as a restaurant ) located in West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle Foodshed? Please take the time to add your information to the Buyer Grower Directory. We estimate it will take between 20 and 30 minutes to fill out. This directory will be printed and distributed at…

2014 Poultry Processing Exemption Details

March 30, 2015   Tags:

In 2014, the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition worked with the Meat Working Group and legislators to update the part of the agricultural code that pertains to poultry slaughter & processing exemptions. These updates took effect June 1st, 2014, and result in these two important changes for West Virginia poultry producers:…

Press Release: $3,500 Grants Available For The Development of WV Food Hubs: Application Support Meeting Will Be Held in Philippi on April 22

March 26, 2015   Tags:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Megan Smith, WVFFC Program Coordinator, msmith@wvfoodandfarm.org, 304-877-7920, www.wvfoodandfarm.org. Mount Hope, WV – The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition has announced that up to $3,500 in funding is available for organizations or individuals that aggregate local food. As single points of sale for multiple local products,…

Report: Meat Facilities Training Highlights Economic Opportunity of Meat Processing

The local production and sale of meat is an economic opportunity for West Virginia farmers & food businesses. In 2013, the niche meat industry in North Carolina generated 19.6 million dollars in sales – and there’s no reason to think West Virginia can’t be a player in the future. The…

WVHUB: The Story Behind WV Food & Farm Victories

The West Virginia Community Development Hub, the parent organization of the West Virginia Food & farm Coalition, has published an article telling the stories of the 2015 passage of SB304, which creates a simple and affordable state-wide health permit for farmers market vendors, and SB352, which expands the producer cooperative section to include all…

Food Hub Mini-Grants: Funding For Local Food Aggregation Projects in WV

March 9, 2015   Tags:

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is offering three mini-grants of $3,000-$3500 each to support aggregation projects across the state. Grantees can use funding for a variety of projects, but funding must enhance the efforts and sustainability of aggregating local food. Specifically, funding can be used for startup aggregation/food…

Report: 2015 Small Farm Conference Food Hub Track

Across the United States, Food Hubs – single points of sale for a variety of aggregated local products – are changing the way people can eat locally, and West Virginia is no different.  At the 2015 Small Farm Conference in Charleston, we partnered with numerous organizations to develop and present a Food…

Photos: 2015 Winter Blues Farmers Market

Lamb is available. The civic center was bustling with people happy to see fresh produce and other West Virginia products for sale. Greens are produced very well through season extension techniques. Farmer Rhonda of Blue Stone Mountain Farm Milligan Creek Farm, located in the Greenbrier Valley, had pastured-raised grass fed beef for…

WVFFC & Partner Events at the Small Farm Conference

February 26, 2015   Tags:

Here’s where you can find us at the 2015 Small Farm Conference. We hope to see you in the audience at one of these or come find us tabling with the Value Chain Cluster Initiative. Friday, February 27, 2015 Food Hub Track 8:30 – 9:20am Funding WV Food Hubs: Business…

Meat Working Group & Value Chain Cluster Initiative team up for training

MEAT Your Profit Potential: A First Hand Look at New Opportunities for the Meat Sector Where: Summersville Arena and Conference Center, 3 Armory Way, Summersville, WV When: March 20th, 2015, 10:00am – 3:00pm What: VC2 and partners the WV Food and Farm Coalition Meat Facilities Working Group and Natural Capital Investment Fund have developed a…

Evaluation for 2015 Road Map for the Food Economy Webinar

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition would to thank you again for attending our Road Map Webinar on February 17th, 2015.  We hope that you gleaned valuable information and momentum from Mark Winne and our panel of WV local food leaders. We appreciate your feedback on the webinar and how we…

2015 Road Map Conference Webinar Roundup

February 19, 2015   Tags:

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is pleased to report that  100+ participants joined us on February 17th, 2015 for a two and a half hour webinar featuring keynote speaker and noted food systems author Mark Winne, a panel of Working Group Chairs, and Tom McConnell from the WVU Small Farm…

Road Map Conference 2015 Shifted To Webinar

Due to inclement winter weather, the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is shifting the content of the 2015 Road Map for the Food Economy Conference to a webinar to be held at 12:15pm, Tuesday, February 17h. While we were dealt an unfortunate set of circumstances, this will allow interested…

Op-Ed: The Need for a Multi-Stakeholder Cooperative Business Statute

February 9, 2015   Tags:

Kevin Johnson is the President of the Board of Directors for the Alderson Community Food Hub. He resides in Alderson, West Virginia.  By supporting the creation of a multi-stakeholder cooperative business statute, West Virginia will create opportunities for business entrepreneurship and bolster our rural agricultural communities. Improving food access while…

Public Invited to Participate at Third Annual Road Map for the Food Economy Conference: Putting Policy And Projects To Work in 2015

February 4, 2015   Tags:

Charleston, W.Va. (February 3, 2015) – Organizers announced today that Registration is now open for the February 17th Road Map for the Food Economy Conference: Putting Policy and Projects to Work in 2015. This affordable event, the third held by the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, will be located…

WVFFC Releases 2015 Legislative Issues Packet

2015 Legislative Agenda As West Virginia’s 2015 Legislative Session begins, the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition has begun lobbying on behalf of stakeholders in the local foods and farming system, from growers and producers to consumers. This report details 3 policies of primary importance to our stakeholders for the 2015 Session: Cooperative Business…

New Resource: A West Virginia Producer’s Guide to Processing & Marketing Meat & Poultry

January 14, 2015   Tags:

After months of development, input, and feedback, the Meat Processing Working Group is now making A West Virginia Producer’s Guide to Processing & Marketing Meat & Poultry available to the public. The intent of the guide is to help current and future meat & poultry producers understand the federal and state laws…

WVFFC response to FSMA developments

December 17, 2014   Tags:

In November of 2013 the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition weighed in on the impacts that the Food & Drug Administration’s proposed “Produce Rule” would have on West Virginia farms. The Produce Rule is part of the “Food Safety Modernization Act,” or FSMA; a sweeping set of new regulations…

Funds Available: $4600 available to support creation or expansion of Mobile Market in West Virginia’s Mid-Ohio Valley

November 19, 2014   Tags:

The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition’s Food Access Working Group is pleased to announce a grant opportunity to support the creation or expansion of a mobile market to increase access to healthy, local food for West Virginia residents living in limited access areas in the Mid-Ohio Valley. The Working…

WVFFC response to FSMA developments

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Oct 6 2014. In November of 2013 the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition weighed in on the impacts that the Food & Drug Administration’s proposed “Produce Rule” would have on West Virginia farms. The Produce Rule is part of the “Food Safety Modernization Act,’…

WVFFC Holds Policy Proposal & Advocacy Workshop

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published May 22 2014. On Thursday, May 15th, 2014, West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition Working Groups met in Summersville to learn how they can make legislative change in West Virginia. Stephen Smith, Executive Director of the WV Healthy Kids and Families Coalition, led the morning…

WVFFC Publishes Farmers Market SNAP Outreach: Tactics and Best Practices in West Virginia

Note: This article was originally published April 8 2014. The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition is pleased to publish Farmers Market SNAP Outreach: Tactics and Best Practices in West Virginia, the culmination of two years worth of pilot projects for SNAP Outreach in West Virginia. Over $490 million in SNAP benefits…

Beckley Local Food Expo highlights regional buyers and producers

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published March 18 2014. On March 13, over 50 buyers and food producers and 10 service providers gathered for the Beckley Local Food Expo, bringing together regional food buyers and producers to share knowledge and explore the potential for business opportunities. Many attendees set up booths…

SNAP Outreach Toolkit Presented at WVU Small Farm Conference

Note: This article was originally published March 4 2014. After two years of pilot projects funded by BB&T and The McDonough Foundation, The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition has published the first draft of Farmers Market SNAP Outreach: Tactics and Best Practices in West Virginia. The pilot projects covered a…

Roadmap for the Food Economy: 2014 Progress Report

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Jan 29 2014. The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition is proud to announce the publication of The Roadmap For The Food Economy: 2014 Progress Report.  The Coalition measured progress in two ways. First, we tracked short term progress on the Road Map’s action items, through…

West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition and West Virginia Farm to School Community Development Group release three-part “Farm To School Series” videos

November 19, 2014  

Note: This article was originally published Dec 5 2013. These videos were presented and funded by the WV Farm to School Development Group and produced by the West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition with the goal of showing the accomplishments as well as the opportunities for growth that Farm to School…

Protect Small Farmers – Tell FDA what you think about the FSMA Produce Rule

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Nov 13 2013. The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA, pronounced “fis-ma”) was signed into law in 2011 and gives the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) new and expansive authority to regulate most aspects of food production with the stated goal of reducing foodborne illness….

1st Annual School Garden Symposium a Success!

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Nov 4 2013. On October 26th, 2013, members of the West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition School Garden Workgroup held a day long symposium at Christ Church United Methodist, in Charleston. The event was attended by over fifty people, including teachers, school administrators, master…

Local Food Expo gets “Thumbs Up;” Huntington Buyer Grower Directory released

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Nov 1, 2013. On Oct. 23, over 50 buyers and food producers and 15 service providers gathered for the Huntington Local Food Expo, a regional mixer of food buyers and local food producers designed to help them do business together.  Restaurants, institutional food buyers, distributors,…

Policy Bulletin: WVDA Initiates Rule Change to Increase On-Farm Poultry Processing Limits, Enable On-Farm Rabbit Processing

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published Sept 19, 2013. Small poultry and rabbit farmers throughout the state may have the opportunity to expand next year thanks to a rule change proposed this summer by the WV Department of Agriculture. Currently farmers are limited to slaughtering and processing just 1,000 poultry per…

WashPo: “Feds say W. Va’s growing local food movement may become a model for the rest of Appalachia”

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published June 12, 2013. During May 21-23, the Appalachian Regional Commission as well as officials from USDA, the U.S. Dept. of Education, several congressional offices, and the national FFA program toured West Virginia to learn about our ripening local food movement.  Stops included the Agriculture Education…

Value Chain Cluster Initiative supports food business development from field to fork

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published May 9, 2013. A new program called the the Value Chain Cluster Initiative provides hands-on business development and coaching services to strengthen local food and farm businesses in four regions of West Virginia.  If you live in one of 17 eligible counties, and are a…

Wrapping Up the Legislative Session – Policy Report from the Food & Farm Coalition

November 19, 2014   Tags:

Note: This article was originally published April 24, 2013. WVFFC staff spent a good bit of time at the Capitol this month.  It has been an exciting session for local food! With help from the Hub’s Director of Community Engagement and Policy, Stephanie Tyree, we met with numerous legislators, talked at…

Citizens gather with decisionmakers for “Road Map for the Food Economy” Working Conference

Note: This article was originally published Feb 5, 2013. Farmers, health advocates, agency officials and others from around the state came together on Tuesday, January 29 for the “Road Map for the Food Economy” Working Conference in Bridgeport, WV. Culminating a year of work and learning since a similar event last…

“Road Map for the Food Economy” charts course for growing West Virginia’s food and farm businesses

Note: This article was originally published Nov 1, 2012. There has never been a better time to go into farming,” said Paul Mock, a well-established hydroponic farmer in Morgan County, in a speech at the 2012 WV Small Farm Conference. Though it may be surprising news at a time when America…