- Author: Julia Van Soelen Kim, UCCE North Bay Food Systems Advisor, firstname.lastname@example.org
Attendees were interested in learning the ins and outs of creating small-batch and artisanal “value-added” products featuring locally grown fruits and vegetables. Value-added production is an emerging food trend with the potential to help grow the local economy and support farmers' livelihood by tapping new revenue streams from preserving the peak of harvest and farm seconds which may otherwise go to waste.
The workshop opened with a warm welcome from Sonoma County Supervisor David Rabbitt (District 2) and Supervisor Shirlee Zane (District 3) and thoughtful facilitation from Joseph McIntyre with Ag Innovations Network. These leaders “built a foundation of trust, care, and urgency for the work, resulting in a productive and energizing day for the audience and presenters alike,” explained Pamela Swan with Sonoma County's Department of Health Services.
The workshop was offered as part of the “Opportunities in Ag Business” series presented by UC Cooperative Extension and Sonoma County Department of Health Services and was generously sponsored by American Ag Credit. The workshop complemented the work of the Sonoma County Food System Alliance and helped move forward the goals of the Food Action Plan, the countywide vision for a vibrant local food system.