Conference Structure

Join us for three days of innovative local food education open to producers, institutions, professionals, consumers  and students dedicated in a sustainable food system.

Two Farm Tours
May 31 Protein Production at Downstream Casino and Edgewood Creamery and Specialty Crop Production (TBA), followed by an evening Social at Barley, Wheat & Rye from 5-7 pm, local foods appetizers, wine and beer

Educational Conference June 1-2 at the Darr Agricultural Center that will include:
Keynote address “Scaling-Up Your Local Food Economy” from Anthoney Flaccavento, CEO of SCALE

Producing for Institutional Purposes

Effective Marketing & Branding That Works, Chris Penner, Blackgate Farms

The Pros and Cons of Selling Through a Food Hub and How to Plan, Anthoney Flaccavento, CEO of SCALE

Cutting Edge from the Pasture to the Plate, Marina Backes, Circle B Ranch

Challenges Facing Protein Production, Protein Production Panel (Producer, Processor, USDA Inspector)

Finance Options for Local Food Production, James Matson, Matson Consulting

Successful Selling Tip When Working Through Restaurants, Andy Hampshire, Farmers Gastropub

The Proof is in the Packaging, Quapaw Chairman Berry and Chris Roper with Downstream Casino and Quapaw Nation

Making the Value Added Producer Grant Work for You, James Matson, Matson Consulting

Building a Regional Food System for All,  Dave Rand, Local Foods Chicago

Looking Towards the Future of Food Safety, Patrick Byers, MU Extension

Out with the Old, In with the New: Rebranding Your Business, Lane McConnell, AgriComm Services

Building Your Brand to Fit the Wholesale Realm, Sean Killingsworth with Grove Salsa Company

Building an Effective Food System from the Bottom Up, Pam Duitsman, MU Extension

Profit Margins and Farm Economics: Developing Your Sales Strategies

Ten Key Considerations to Successfully Scale-Up Your Farm

National Speakers

Anthony Flaccavento, President of SCALE
Anthony fosters bottom up community environmental and economic development as a farmer, advocate, consultant, and author.

Anthony is an organic farmer and has been working on community environmental and economic development in central Appalachia for the past 25 years. SCALE, Inc, is a private consulting business dedicated to catalyzing and supporting ecologically healthy regional economies and food systems. SCALE works with community leaders, farmers, foundations, economic development agencies and others in Appalachia, and other communities.

Dave Rand, Co-Founder of Local Foods Chicago
Dave is a co-founder for Local Foods. He manages sales of Local Foods’ distribution arm. He cultivates relationships with the Midwest’s best farmers and Chicago’s best restaurants, caterers, cafeterias and grocers. Dave knows good food. His background includes work for an Illinois grass-fed cattle ranch, an organic heirloom grain farm, a salmon cannery in Bristol Bay, Alaska, and a role as the Farm Forager for Chicago’s Green City Market.

James Matson, Matson Consulting
James has a passion for helping rural businesses, whether they are looking to start a new business or wanting to expand their current operation. He is a business advisor with expertise in many areas involved with marketing and business organization. Mr. Matson has more than twenty-five years marketing, developing, researching, writing, and teaching experience in management for private, government, and non-profit organizations. He is currently the owner and lead consultant for Matson Consulting where he uses his years of national and international experience to bring his passion to life.

In 2001, Mr. Matson created Matson Consulting to specialize in helping rural businesses in a variety of industries. The firm’s major project areas include feasibility studies, business plans, strategic plans, marketing strategies, grants, and proposals.

Mr. Matson has created several professional partnerships with other consultants and agencies to help with the creation of these documents and provide the additional information and resources to help businesses succeed. The firm’s partners include the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture, Innovation, and Rural Sustainability and North Carolina State University. These partners and consultants bring a plethora of expertise in many areas, including the procurement and logistics of local food.

Register today by clicking on the link below.  The three day conference is $150 per person or $75 for students. Scholarships are available for producers thanks to a generous sponsorship through the Walton Foundation.

For information about sponsorship, the trade show or general information please contact Lane McConnell at 417.766.8711 or

The 1st Annual New Food Conference is a regional local food conference focusing on technology, funding, marketing and education geared towards building the local food industry across the Ozarks region. The conference’s goal is to help enable local food growers to scale-up operations to fulfill the growing demand of local food that is grown, raised and produced across Southern Missouri and Northwest Arkansas.