In 2008, South Dakota organized a Buy Fresh Buy Local (BFBL) Chapter with the Food Routes Network. The Food Routes Network is based in Pennsylvania; their purpose is to help build state and local food routes and farming systems in the US.
Small-scale producers often find themselves with too little time to produce and direct market their locally grown products. Food hubs provide another marketing option to producers who do not have time to participate in a farmers market or other direct marketing venues.
Producers selling meat directly from their farm at a farmers market or other venue need to be in compliance with a number of state and federal regulations. The Federal Meat Inspection Act regulates meat processing in the U.S. and compliance is conducted by the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS). The South Dakota Animal Industry Board (SDAIB) has authority over red meat produced and sold within the state.
The following article contains information, links, and resources on the topic of post-harvest food safety.
Growers producing local food are responsible for the safety of the products they offer for sale. Good food safety practices start with production. Good Agricultural Practices (GAPSs) are ways that growers can prevent on-farm contamination of fruits and vegetables.
Growers should work hard to prevent contamination of their products during production, transportation and marketing. However, food safety does not end with the grower. Upon making a sale, growers can serve as food safety educators. Talk about food safety with your customers or print and share the resources below. This will help build trust with customers and ensure a safe, healthy food supply.
Food safety risks need to be managed at each stage of the “farm to table” process, including at the farmers market or other local venue. Growers are responsible for the safety of the products they offer for sale. The resources below provide information to growers about the food safety risks present at the point of sale.
A year or so ago, I attended a breakout session at a conference called, “Do I Need an Accountant?” It really helped clarify to me the varying complexity of business set-up structures. Many entrepreneurs start out with sole proprietorship business structures, but as their small business matures, there are other options for better tax protection, and better business strategy.
Creating your identity as a business is essential to reaching customers. One of the most inexpensive and easy ways to promote your identity is through the use of business cards. Even in our world of constantly changing technology, being able to carry business cards with you and hand them out to people you meet is still a great way to advertise.
The following iGrow Local Foods article contains information on a variety of different local food grant opportunities available in South Dakota.
SDSU Extension is pleased to offer guidance on establishing youth & school gardens projects in your community. We offer project coaching, curriculum assistance, access to our ‘Seed Bank Grant’ and the ‘CFEL Children’s Garden Grant,’ the ‘Youth in the Garden’ Webinar series, and other educational trainings.
Interested in starting a school garden to utilize with your students for hands-on learning. SDSU Extension is pleased to offer staff to help coach teams as they establish a school garden.
Resources for growing at your school or community garden should be shared with participants, especially those new to the process. Garden educators may be excited about using the garden as a teaching tool, but may have limited horticultural backgrounds.
Community gardens grow more than vegetables, flowers and herbs. New relationships form, people get physical exercise, and fresh local food can be provided for community members. There are many forms of community gardens.
Learn more about Native American community garden projects throughout South Dakota and access helpful resources with information on starting up Native American community garden projects.
Novice gardeners and master gardeners share a love of and respect for nature, which is one of the many reasons why they naturally seek out like-minded individuals to organize clubs or associations. Many cities and counties have their own clubs or associations and the following is not a complete listing, but rather a beginning resource for connecting with others in the gardening community.
This article provides information on food safety concerns at selling locations such as a farmers market. It also provides information on how producers should encourage their customers to treat frozen meats and poultry in order to prevent food safety issues.
Pricing your products: Survey results done at four farmers markets in Oregon identified the reasons why meat and poultry eaters did not buy meat at farmers markets. The top three reasons included: (1) It costs too much, (2) Inconvenience, and (3) Food safety concerns.
As you prepare to sell your products at a farmers market or other local venue, you will also want to remember some practices to ensure the safety and quality of your product. Most meats are sold as frozen food products and should be maintained as solid frozen products at temperatures of 20° F or below.
The wine industry in South Dakota has experienced steady growth over the past 10 years, and demand for locally grown, high-quality wine grapes is strong.
The following article contains information on producing, harvesting, grading, and marketing fresh vegetables and herbs in South Dakota.
The following article contains a complete collection of helpful resources about the production, grading, certification, verification, pricing, and safe handling of fruits.
Fresh, whole raw fruits and vegetables grown in South Dakota can currently be sold without any regulatory requirements. However, once a raw fruit or vegetable is processed, South Dakota law requires that certain regula¬tions must be followed in order to ensure the safety of the product.
If you are planning to sell eggs in the State of South Dakota, you must first obtain a yearly Egg Dealer License. The application for this license can be found and printed from the South Dakota Department of Agriculture’s website and costs either $100 for a Class B License, or $10 for a Class A License.
In 2010 the South Dakota “Home-Processed Foods Law” came into effect allowing for sale of home baked goods at farmer’s markets and similar venues. In 2011, a new section was added to this law expanding on the sale of home-baked goods.
Considering starting a local food business in South Dakota? Whether you are thinking of becoming a farm marketer, a food processors or a foodservice vendor, planning out your business will help you build a strong foundation. Here are resources that will help you in the planning process.
Hospitals, nursing homes, universities and other institutional buyers have the potential for large volume sales on a recurring basis. This could create a reliable customer for the grower and also allow the grower to focus on larger production acres of a smaller number of crops.
Grocery and food retail outlets will require producers to supply larger quantities of product on a consistent basis. There will be more pressure for uniform products that meet specifications and packaging standards, depending on the size of the store. There will be variation in requirements between small niche stores and large regionally owned chains.
Farm to School is broadly defined as a program that connects schools (K-12) and local farms with the objectives of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health and nutrition education opportunities, and supporting local and regional farmers. Every day millions of children eat at least one meal at their school.
The term “farmer’s market” is often applied to a variety of businesses and social structures. It is not uncommon to see a roadside stand labeled as such. It may also be used at a grocery store above the produce section or even within a restaurant menu.
The South Dakota local food Co-op has created an online connection of locally produced foods to consumers. The Co-op is a project of Dakota Rural Action, a grassroots family agriculture and conservation group. The cost to become a member of the South Dakota Local Foods Co-op is $53 for a lifetime membership.
CSA is short for Community Supported Agricultural, and it is an alternative market that has gained popularity across the nation as well as in South Dakota. This type of program allows a farmer to sell subscriptions or shares to customers prior to the growing season.
For growers selling produce and products locally, food safety must be a priority. There are several stages where food is at risk for becoming contaminated and dangerous for customers to eat. The following articles provide links and information to growers about best practices for food safety at each stage where contamination can occur.
Many farmers markets accept only check and cash for purchases. While this system is sufficient, accepting all forms of electronic purchases can open up new opportunities for the market. First, electronic purchases will provide sales data to the market. This data can be used to track growth and understand buying patterns and trends throughout the year.
If a vendor plans to sell any kind of tangible personal property (TPP), products delivered electronically, or provide a taxable service a sales tax license must be obtained. This includes sales in person, at special events, by phone, internet, or catalog. There is no minimum sales amount required before becoming licensed. No fee is charged for a sales tax license.
Within South Dakota there are multiple departments and agencies to assist you with fulfilling required business and food safety regulations as a producer.
According to the United State Department of Agriculture National Organic Program, “Organic is a labeling term that specifies that the food or other agricultural product has been produced through accepted methods using cultural, biological, and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance, and conserve biodiversity.
South Dakota State University can assist with developing nutrition fact labels for products you are developing with plans to sell, or if you simply want nutrition information for your favorite recipe.
The South Dakota State Legislature passed a bill in 2010 that allowed for the sale of home baked goods and home canned foods at farmer’s markets and similar venues. Refer to the publications in this article to learn what you can do regarding this law.
The South Dakota Department of Health Office of Health Protection serves as the regulatory body enforcing the South Dakota Foodservice Code. If within the city of Sioux Falls, the Sioux Falls Department of Health is the regulatory authority for all foodservice types of establishments.