The Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s Minnesota Grown program is now accepting new members. Ten randomly selected new members who apply before December 31, 2017 will receive a Minnesota Grown prize pack, which includes a metal “Proud Member” sign and a Minnesota Grown hat.
Farms, farmers’ markets and food businesses that sell products grown or raised in Minnesota may register at one of two membership levels. New Minnesota Grown members will join a statewide network of more than 1,300 existing members.
“A Minnesota Grown membership comes with a lot of benefits,” said Member Services Coordinator Karen Lanthier. “All members can use the iconic Minnesota Grown logo and have access to unlimited branded promotional pieces. We also feature members on our website and social media pages every day of the week. Everything we do is to support the farmers, farmers’ markets and businesses that make up our membership.”
The Minnesota Grown labeling membership costs $20 per year and grants members the right to use the trademarked Minnesota Grown logo, unlimited branded promotional items, access to a labeling cost share program, and the option to be listed in the Wholesale Minnesota Grown Directory.
For an additional $40 per year, members can be listed in the printed and online versions of the Minnesota Grown Directory for producers selling directly to consumers. Nearly 135,000 printed Minnesota Grown Directories were distributed statewide in 2017, and the online version of the Directory receives more than 350,000 unique visitors annually.
Wendy Wustenberg runs Windswept Hills Farm, where she raises Blue-Faced and Border Leicester sheep and sells wool to local customers. Wendy became a Minnesota Grown member in the summer of 2017 and saw an immediate impact on her business.
“Within days of joining Minnesota Grown, we had six new customers from the online directory listing,” Wustenberg said. “We are completely sold out of the 2017 lamb crop and have three new fiber customers. There couldn’t be a better investment in linking with buy-local customers.”
For more information on becoming a Minnesota Grown member, please visit the Become a Member page or call Karen Lanthier at 651-201-6140.
Alauna Yust, MDA Communications