Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities Conference: Food, Ag and Natural Resources business tips

Starting and growing a business in food, agriculture and natural resources is one focus of Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities Conference. Learn about the role of community leaders, and how entrepreneurs are important to your community.

Community leaders will tell you that the local amenities such as restaurants, breweries, Farmers Market and artists, along with perhaps a fishing pier, are integral parts of their vibrant community. So how can community leaders and entrepreneurs learn to work together and keep their relationship tightly woven to grow their community? By attending the Michigan State University Extension Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities (CEC) Conference Oct. 8-9, 2014 in downtown East Tawas, Michigan.

Although general entrepreneurial community growth sessions will be offered along with other focus areas, the conference offers the following sessions specifically aimed at food, agriculture and natural resources businesses: 

  • Opportunities for Sustainable Development and Conservation in Rural Michigan
  • Understanding Food Hubs: Reimagining Food Distribution
  • Growing Entrepreneurs: Gardening, Arts and Culture
  • Promoting Sustainable Coastal Tourism
  • So You Want a Craft Beer Establishment in Your Town
  • Agri-Tourism: Is this Right For Your Community?
  • Understanding Tourism for Michigan Communities
  • Gateway Park and the Farmers Market 

Here is more detailed information on just three of the sessions listed:

Opportunities for Sustainable Development and Conservation in Rural Michigan

The session is designed to assist landowners who are seeking ways to supplement their income utilizing their land. Resources and information will be given for outdoor recreational businesses such as agritourism operations, hunting leases, nature trails, nature-based tourism, as well as wildlife habitat management. 

Promoting Sustainable Coastal Tourism: Lessons From A Great Lakes Charter Fishing Business

At the heart of the Great Lakes, Michigan businesses and communities are positioned to capitalize upon the coastal assets offered by our amazing freshwater seas. Learn how Michigan Sea Grant research and resources have helped promote sustainable coastal tourism. The session will feature Calypso Sport fishing Charters, a northern Lake Huron charter fishing business, to share their best practices and lessons as a coastal business operator and entrepreneur. 

So You Want A Craft Beer Establishment In Your Town?

As the craft beer industry sweeps across the United States, Michigan has embraced this new entrepreneurial endeavor full on.  Craft beer establishments serve as a draw to your community, thus fostering other business opportunities. But… not all craft beer establishments are the same. How do you know which type is right for your community? This session will be a moderated panel discussion featuring three successful brewery entrepreneurs, each representing a different facet of the craft beer industry. 

The conference runs noon-to-noon and only costs $85. Visit the registration site for even more information

The MSU Product Center, in partnership with Michigan State University Extension, provides free business counseling for product development and marketing strategies specifically for businesses focusing on food, agriculture or biology. For more information, visit the MSU Product Center website or call 517-432-8750. 

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