Friday, February 19, 2010

Growing businesses and creating opportunities in local foods

I believe economic development means helping create opportunities.

Inventor and Entrepreneur Clubs are a really fun way to discuss and learn about opportunities for starting and growing enterprises of all kinds.

We have ours in Iowa County typically on the fourth Monday evening of each month. People get together to discuss, ask questions, and share strategies about entrepreneurship and doing enterprise. It's really fun to see new and old friends interact and help one another with business and startup ideas.

Each month different speakers focus on specific topics. In next week's meeting we'll have Maria Davis from one of our great local foods group REAP, and Lois Federman from her wonderful program Something Special From Wisconsin. Mark will speak directly to growers interested in producing vegetables for the Highland processing and freezing plant. I'll get to cover the possibilities for food entrepreneurship and business expansion available through our new Wisconsin Innovation Kitchen. Looks like a landscape of great opportunities to me.

Here is our press release for our next Iowa County Entrepreneur Club meeting. You can download a PDF version at the end.

Iowa County Entrepreneur Club meeting to focus on growing businesses and creating jobs in local foods and regional food processing.

Dodgeville, WI –

Start or grow your own business around the growing possibilities of local foods and regional food processing!

Local foods and regional food enterprises are blooming everywhere. This is becoming a great way to start or grow businesses in Southwest Wisconsin.

Join us at our next Entrepreneur Club meeting Wed., Feb. 24 in Dodgeville, WI. This meeting will specifically focus on the strong possibilities for food and agricultural entrepreneurship in our region, with four featured speakers:

Maria Davis from the REAP Food Group (Research, Education,
Action, and Policy) will discuss 'Buy Fresh Buy Local Southwest
Wisconsin' and the demand for local foods.

Lois Federman from Something Special From Wisconsin will
discuss the possibilities for working with farmers markets,
produce auctions, and Community Supported Agriculture
(CSA) programs.

Mark Olson from Renaissance Farm will discuss plans for the
Individual Quick Frozen (IQF) vegetable processing and
freezing facility planned for Highland. This section is meant to
give regional growers as much information as is available so
they can plan future farm activities with this facility in mind.

Rick Terrien from Iowa County Area Economic Development will
discuss business support available for area growers and farm-based
entrepreneurs. Rick will also discuss business startup and
expansion possibilities at the new community-access Wisconsin Innovation
Kitchen, a state-certified food processing facility available to growers and
food entrepreneurs, operated by the Hodan Center in Mineral Point.

Grow your own business around the growing possibilities of local foods and regional food processing!

Please join us for a great evening of information sharing at our next Iowa County Entrepreneur Club meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 24. There will be a social hour beginning at 5:30 and the meeting will begin at 6 PM. The location is at the Stonefield Apartments, 407 E. Madison St., Dodgeville WI. The event is free to the public. Bring a friend!

Download more information, agendas, location maps and much more at

Networking among attendees will be encouraged in the evening's program. "Our goal is to grow the network of entrepreneurs and those that support them in the Iowa County area" said Rick Terrien, Executive Director of ICAEDC.

The Iowa County Area Entrepreneurs Club is an informational forum where entrepreneurs, inventors, existing businesses, new businesses and people thinking about starting their own businesses can come together to encourage each other and share challenges and encouragement. The group meets on a monthly basis, usually the fourth Wednesday of the month. More information about the group is available on the ICAEDC website at or by emailing

Download a meeting flyer for this meeting focusing on growing vegetables for the proposed Highland processing and freezing facility: Meeting_Flyer_2_24_10.pdf


If you're in the area please stop by!

Iowa County. Come grow with us.

Iowa County (WI) Area Entrepreneurs Club

REAP Food Group. Research, Education, Action and Policy on Food Group is building a regional food system that is healthful, just, and both environmentally and economically sustainable.

Something Special From Wisconsin. I believe Iowa County Economic Development is the first County EDC member in Wisconsin. I love this program.

Mark's Renaissance Farm. Who knew cinnamon rolls could become an addiction?

Download this media release in PDF format

Information about growing vegetables for the proposed Highland processing and freezing facility.

No comments: