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School Garden Workshop in Northern Michigan

School Gardens | January 19, 2015 | By Diane Conners

Janis Groomes, food service director at Northport Public Schools, knows the power of school gardens to get kids interested in eating fruits and vegetables, even ones that are unusual....

Ag Forum: Local food movement gathering momentum

Local Food | November 26, 2014 | By Diane Conners

At the recent 2014 Michigan Good Food Summit, I was one of 425 people who heard story after story about how the movement to support local food and agriculture is growing across the state....

Ag Forum: Learn About Food, Farms & Health on Oct. 10

Food, Farms, Health | September 23, 2014 | By Diane Conners

In the dizzying array of ever-evolving studies about which foods are healthiest, eating more fruits and vegetables is one fundamental piece of advice that health experts all agree is important in preventing chronic disease and living a vibrant, healthy li...

Northwest Michigan’s Farm to School Program Thrives

Farm to School | September 19, 2014 | By Diane Conners

In Northern Michigan Kids news, schools across northwest Michigan have been serving up local food experiences in cafeterias, classrooms, and school gardens, and we’ll be sharing some of those stories each month. It’s a concerted effort to get kids excited...

Rebuilding 'foodshed' and community resilience

Bob Russell | August 7, 2014 | By Diane Conners

“Rebuilding the Foodshed: How to Create Local, Sustainable, and Secure Food Systems,” by farmer and university professor Philip Ackerman-Leist, is the third book in the Bob Russell Resilience Reading Project. He discusses how we came to the largely indust...

Ten Cents a Meal program is expanding

10 Cents a Meal | May 28, 2014 | By Diane Conners

If you are a northwest Michigan farmer who grows fruits or vegetables and you like the idea of local school children eating the food you grow—or you just want more sales—now is the time to explore those new markets. The Michigan Land Use Institute and Tr...

Network advances local food at institutions

Local Food | April 21, 2014 | By Diane Conners

A new Michigan Farm to Institution Network is helping schools, hospitals, day care centers, senior living and other institutions ramp up their purchases of locally grown food....

‘Cooked’: We all need to get back in the kitchen

Resilience | February 21, 2014 | By Diane Conners

If you read "Cooked," you’ll salivate. You’ll learn interesting history and science and anthropology and philosophy. Cooked, in many regards, is about getting back to the enjoyment inherent in preparing our own meals, and the sense of self-sufficiency tha...

Our View: While not perfect, Farm Bill is a step in the right direction

Farm Bill | February 6, 2014 | By Diane Conners

While there are measures we wish would have made it into the just-passed Farm Bill, we're pleased that it includes renewal of funding for programs that only started to see serious funding in the 2008 Farm Bill—renewable energy, beginning farmers, organic ...

Speak to FDA about food safety rules

Food Safety | November 11, 2013 | By Diane Conners

Nov. 15 is the deadline for the public to comment on rules developed by the Food and Drug Administration to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act. It’s imperative that those who want to buy or sell locally grown produce weigh in....

Farm Bill: It's time to get it done

Farm Bill | September 5, 2013 | By Diane Conners

It’s hard to believe that we are just one month away from the Farm Bill expiring and yet highly partisan, polarized factions of Congress still have failed to pass a new bill. With one more week before Congress goes back in session, there’s no better time ...

Cooking with Kids at the Fair

TLD | August 2, 2013 | By Diane Conners

Cotton candy and elephant ears are typical fare at fairs, but locally grown fruits and vegetables have become a new tradition with the Taste the Local Difference: Cooking with Kids at the Fair event at the Northwestern Michigan Fair....

Double Up Food Bucks give needy a leg up

Healthy Food for All | June 29, 2013 | By Diane Conners

The statewide, nonprofit program helps financially struggling families eat healthy while supporting business for farmers. It doubles the money that people who receive SNAP Bridge Card assistance (food stamps) have to spend with local farmers at farmers ma...

FoodCorps seeks next crop of hard-working service members

FoodCorps, Farm To School | January 30, 2013 | By Diane Conners

FoodCorps, a national organization affiliated with AmeriCorps, is accepting applications through March 24 for up to 130 positions nationwide—including two in northwest Lower Michigan based out of the Michigan Land Use Institute’s Traverse City office....

Farm Stand: We need to help kids avoid obesity

Healthy Food, 10 Cents, Farm to School | November 27, 2012 | By Diane Conners

Have you heard of acanthosis nigricans? I hadn’t — not until I served on the planning committee for a recent event that Munson Medical Center and PriorityHealth sponsored to raise awareness about the significant impacts of obesity on our community, our ec...

10 Cents a Meal aims to bring local food to school cafeterias

Healthy Food, 10 Cents, Farm to School | October 15, 2012 | By Diane Conners

Would you chip in $1 if it meant 10 schoolchildren could eat locally grown fruits and vegetables at lunch on Monday? How about $10 for 100 kids? That’s about four classes full of children, bursting with energy and ready to learn new things. You can do jus...

Farm Stand: Four more weeks for market … and the Farm Bill

Policy, Farmers Markets, Farm Bill | October 4, 2012 | By Diane Conners

The good news for food lovers in northwest Lower Michigan is that the bustling Traverse City farmers market has extended its two-day a week market season for four more weeks. And it’s also four more weeks before Congress gets back to work after the electi...

Farm Stand: Time is running out on Farm Bill

Policy | September 20, 2012 | By Diane Conners

House leaders are preparing to go home Friday without bringing up for a vote a Farm Bill that passed with bipartisan support in its own House Agriculture Committee. Waiting until next year is unacceptable....

Farm Stand: Buying local for our students makes sense

Healthy Food | September 4, 2012 | By Diane Conners

The school year is about to start. And after the Republican and Democratic conventions, Congress will be back in session. Many are hoping Congress will resume debating the new Farm Bill, including provisions that could mean more fresh, local food for stud...

Double-Up Food Bucks Helps Shoppers Taste The Local Difference

Healthy Food | August 21, 2012 | By Diane Conners

A year ago, Kathie Maldonado couldn’t imagine eating food like this. Now, thanks to a new nonprofit program, Kathie can double her Bridge Card money up to $20 each shopping trip if she uses it to purchase groceries at participating farmers markets. That m...

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