The number of Wisconsin farmers markets has doubled in the past five years, according to Andrew Dane with UW Extension Community Development. He's helping organize the 3rd annual Local Food Summit where one goal is professionalizing the local food industry. He estimates there are 250 to 300 such markets currently in the state.
One goal of this year's summit is tapping into institutions such as providing locally made food to schools, restaurants or grocery stores. He says this would require more sophisticated supply chains, delivery systems, invoicing and web presence.
The Local Food Summit takes place Thursday and Friday in Wisconsin Rapids. It's open to anyone interested in getting involved with local food including farmers, organizers and enthusiasts.