Summit to promote local, sustainable systems in KY

Published 11:18 am Friday, January 17, 2020

FRANKFORT — The second annual Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit will bring together the Commonwealth’s farm and food community for a day of workshops, networking and conversations. The event will take place on Feb. 26 at the University of Kentucky’s Gatton Student Center.

“The Kentucky Department of Agriculture is proud to support the second annual Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan F. Quarles said. “Efforts like this one allow important conversations to take place between members of the Commonwealth’s agricultural and culinary industries. These conversations help grow our economy, create jobs, and support Kentucky’s farm families.”

“I think of our farms as businesses that are very important to our economy,” Mayor Linda Gorton said. “The agricultural operations that are conducted on our farmland have a $2.3 billion annual impact on our economy. This summit is a great opportunity to make sure we’re doing all we can to support and encourage our agricultural sector.”

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“The Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit provides a unique opportunity to bring together a diverse group of people in different areas of our food system who share a common interest and goal: building a resilient and regenerative farm and food system for Kentucky,” said Dr. Nancy Cox, University of Kentucky Dean of the college of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

Conference speakers include representatives of the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, the University of Kentucky’s Cooperative Extension Service, and Kentucky’s business and agriculture sectors. Attendees will learn about agricultural research, market development, community nutrition, public policy and much more.

“Through this kind of collaborative enterprise, we hope to foster a statewide common vision and develop strategies to ultimately provide a vibrant and sustainable food system in Kentucky,” Lilian Brislen, executive director of The Food Connection said.

Registration is $75 and covers full participation in the summit, a locally sourced lunch, and a networking reception with light refreshments. The cost of parking is included for off-campus guests.

The Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit is a cooperative effort between The Food Connection at the University of Kentucky, Lexington’s Bluegrass Farm to Table initiative and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s (KDA) Office of Agricultural Marketing which operates Kentucky Proud, the state’s official agricultural marketing program. American Farmland Trust is the title sponsor for the 2020 summit.

To register or to learn more about participation or sponsorship opportunities, visit: