2013 Farm Credit National Food MarketMaker Award Winners Announced

Event date: 2013-06-05

Michigan MarketMaker was honored by Farm Credit with the 2013 National MarketMaker Innovation Award. Their program,Using MI MarketMaker to Expand the Impact of Michigan Food Banks,”was presented the award at the National Value Added Agriculture Conference in Rogers, AR on May 20, 2013.

Farm Credit contributed incentive cash awards for the winner and runners-up to use to improve their MarketMaker programs.

The Food Bank Council of Michigan uses MI MarketMaker to source produce from producers willing to supply local food banks, pantries, and regional supporting distribution warehouses. Farms identified through MI MarketMaker provided over 1.2 million pounds of produce in 2011. As a result, MarketMaker enhanced business profile capabilities to include Food Banks as a separate, searchable category.

First runner up went to Iowa MarketMaker for their program,Employment Opportunities-MarketMaker Job Board”.This program resulted in a new job board posting service on the Iowa MarketMaker Buy & Sell Forum allowing producers and businesses to find seasonal and full time labor in the food value chain. It also created a new partnership with Iowa Work Force Development and US Jobs Bank.

New York MarketMaker took second runner up for “Developing New Markets and Interests for Rural Producers and Processors”.NY MarketMaker created new urban markets for producers, processors, food service providers, and faith-based organizations. They successfully developed two faith-based food hubs with a network of 20 additional churches which will expand in all five boroughs in 2013. These efforts resulted in Faith-Based Organizations being added to the Buyer profile on National MarketMaker.

Representing Farm Credit at the awards was Gary Matteson, Vice President of Young, Beginning, Small Farmer Programs and Outreach. "Farm Credit is proud to recognize the resourcefulness of each MarketMaker program and looks forward to seeing other states benefit from these great ideas. Special congratulations to Michigan, Iowa, and New York for their support of MarketMaker’s goal to connect producers to markets and improve consumer’s access to fresh, healthy, local foods."

MarketMaker is hosted and maintained by University of Illinois and is guided by an advisory board made up of representatives from among participating partner states. There is no charge associated with having a business listed on the site or to search the site for information.

For more information about MarketMaker, contact Darlene Knipe (309-757-9077;dknipe@illinois.edu).

Additional Resources:

PDF Document
MarketMaker_Innovation_Award_Press_Release.pdf (352 KB)

Dar Knipe
Title: Principal Investigator, National MarketMaker
Email: Contact Me
Primary Phone: (217) 903-5979

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