The Ohio Fresh Foods Corridor is pleased to offer two workshops this winter for those interested in specialty crop production. Whether you’re thinking about getting into speciality crops or have an already established specialty crop farm and are looking to improve your business, these workshops will be beneficial.

The first workshop, held Feb. 11, focuses on marketing, and includes sessions on understanding your customer, reaching out to your customer via traditional and digital media, discovering new tools to help you market your product, and a look at the Ohio Proud program.

The second workshop, held Feb. 25, will focus on considerations and opportunities in specialty crop production. Sessions will be led by farmers and experts on CSAs, Agri-tourism, cottage foods, local food and food councils, organizing and making the most of community events, legal considerations and more.

Cost to attend each workshop is $30 per person. The fee is $50 per person if you are attending both workshops. Payment can be sent via mail or paid on-site the day of the workshop as outlined in the registration form below.

Go to the online registration form now.

Or download the PDF registration form to print, fill out and send to register.

Workshop Agendas

General Marketing Workshop

Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014

10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Location: Pickaway County Public Library – 1160 North Court St., Circleville, Ohio

10:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. – Introductions and Background of the Ohio Fresh Foods Corridor

11:00 a.m. – Noon – Understanding Your Customer and Getting Your Message Across (Wilt Public Relations, Inc.)

Noon – 12:30 p.m. – Lunch

12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. – Farmers Markets – Eric Barrett

1:30 p.m. – 2 p.m. – Ohio Proud (Lori Panda)

2 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. – Break

2:15 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Agri-tourism – Eric Barrett

3 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Wrap-up and Questions

Considerations & Opportunities Workshop

Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014

10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Location: Pickaway County Public Library – 1160 North Court St., Circleville, Ohio

10:30 a.m. – Noon

  • Setting up Your Food Business: risk reduction strategies — Peggy Hall and Emily Adams — What are the risks associated with a food business that make it unique compared to other businesses? Find out how to evaluate the risk in your current or future operation and how a business entity and other tools can help you better manage that risk.
  • Selling Your Meat, Eggs and Produce:  keeping it safe and legal —  Peggy Hall and Emily Adams — Regulations can differ depending on where you sell meat, eggs and produce, but maintaining safety practices is imperative no matter where you market your food products. Join us for a discussion about the latest from the Food Safety Modernization Act and find out how the rules can be different for selling meat, eggs and produce from your own farm versus a farmers market or other retail outlet.

Noon – 12:30 p.m. – Lunch

12:30 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. – Basics of Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) – Bryn Bird

1:15 p.m. – 2 p.m. – MarketMaker and Market Ready (Rob Leeds)

2 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. – Local Food Councils – Bryn Bird

2:30 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. – Maps and Apps (Rob Leeds)

3:15 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Wrap-up

About the Presenters/Speakers

  • Emily Adams has been the Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator for OSU Extension in Coshocton County since May 2012. Emily graduated from Ohio State with a BS and MS in Food Science with a focus in dairy processing. She worked for Abbott Nutrition as a product development scientist for 9 years developing nutritional bars, beverages and powders. She returned to Coshocton County in 2011 with husband, Ryan and two children, Nathan (6) and Julia (4). Emily and Ryan are also owners of Adams Family Concession and enjoy participating in festivals.
  • Eric Barrett is an OSU Extension Educator in Mahoning County, working half time as the Ohio Farm Benchmarking Program Project Manager. He completed a degree in Animal Sciences at Ohio State University and stayed to earn an MS degree in Agricultural Economics. His specialization is direct marketing and local foods.  Eric also works extensively with horticultural programs and with Master Gardener Volunteers. He has been teaching and leading OSU Extension programs since 1996.  Eric and his wife Leslie moved to the Youngstown area in 2012.  Before this, Eric worked in a dairy and vegetable growing area in Washington County (where he grew up), in an agronomic focused area in Fairfield County and on campus in the Department of Agricultural Economics where he worked with human resources and management programs for farmers.  He also gained experience through a private marketing firm. Teaching is his passion.  Eric regularly presents at state and national conferences, including workshops in Buffalo, Nashville, Kansas City and beyond.  He has received several teaching awards, a local tourism award, an Ohio Fair Association Award and the OSU Extension State Achievement Award. Eric grew up on his family’s dairy farm in Vincent, Ohio, where his family still raises grass fed beef, grows pumpkins and berries, and manages fall agritourism activities.
  • Bryn Bird is a second-generation family farmer and Rural Coalition organizer from outside Granville, OH. She returned to agriculture after experiencing the disconnect between the consumer and the farmer who grows it while living the big city life. She completed her Master’s in public health at The George Washington University. Ms. Bird is committed to the Rural Coalition’s mission “to work together for a just food and farm policy.” She has recently appeared on NPR, MSNBC, and other media outlets. Bryn and her husband Brian moved to Granville in 2011 after living in Virginia while Brian fulfilled his commitment to the U.S. Navy. Bryn continues her work in Washington, DC with Rural Coalition and advocating on behalf of socially disadvantaged farmers around the country through federal policy reform. After returning to the farm, the two took on much of the communication and outreach for the farm.
  • Peggy Kirk Hall,  assistant professor and director of the OSU Extension Agricultural & Resource Law Program.   Graduate of The Ohio State University (B.S., M.S., Natural Resource Policy) and the University of Wyoming College of Law (J.D.).  Current President of the American Agricultural Law Association; Past Chair, Ohio State Bar Association Agricultural Law Committee;  Advisory Board Member, National Agricultural Law Center.  Teaches Agribusiness Law, AEDE 3170, in the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.
  • Rob Leeds–  Rob and Christy Leeds are the owner-operators of Leeds Family Farm in Ostrander, Ohio. They recently experienced building a new activity barn, they see large crowds on their farm every year, they know production of pumpkins, beef cattle, crops, boer goats and agritourism. They continue to be innovators, even after 50 years of combined experience.  Rob and Christy are also both Extension Educators, Rob on the agronomic crops side, and Christy in 4-H. Together they are certainly the most accomplished agriculture educators among our tour leadership team. Rob and Christy understand the young people we hire, and they know how to help adults grow their business.
  • Lori Panda–  Lori Panda is the Senior Program Manager of Ohio Proud, the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s marketing program that identifies and promotes food and agricultural products that are made and grown in Ohio. Lori has been involved with Ohio Proud since its inception in 1993 and manages all aspects of the program. Marketing initiatives focus on consumer promotion, marketing services and new market access and development.  Lori is also a member of the State Direct Marketing Team, Ohio MarketMaker, Ohio’s Market Ready Program and the Ohio Farm to School Advisory Board.  If you are a consumer looking for products or a company who needs marketing assistance, Ohio Proud can help! Visit