Wyoming Conference on Forming a State Food Coalition and Action Agenda

Conference is free and open to all food system stakeholders from across Wyoming.

Based on input collected in seven regional local agriculture meetings and from numerous local food system stakeholders, it is clear there is genuine interest in forming a functional statewide food coalition/council to advocate and work on food system development.

Wyoming does not have a Food Policy Coalition/Council to attend to food related issues in a coordinated way. The removal of barriers for producers and increased access to healthful foods for consumers could promote improved economic, physical, social, and environmental wellness statewide.

Local efforts to address all of these challenges demonstrate tremendous skill, creativity, and grit but there is no statewide coordination of effort or unified voice advocating for statewide changes. This conference represents a significant 'next step' toward forming an organized coalition to work on behalf of all food system stakeholders.

This is a results oriented conference. We will build upon the work and inputs of regional stakeholders and create a plan of action for the way ahead. Primary conference goals include: 1) Discuss and affirm consensus on the coalition's enduring goals and objectives; 2)Develop an inclusive organizational structure to support coalition activities; 3) Develop functional stakeholder working groups, identify volunteer leaders and expand working group specific goals and objectives; 4) Develop a plan of action and milestone timeline to guide the coalition's formation and activities over the coming months.

Conference invitees/attendees include : producers, vendors, processors, policymakers, regulatory enforcement, state agency representatives, educators, food access and food justice advocates, health and nutrition specialists, and engaged citizens; gathering to address production, marketing, policies, and food accessibility with the aim of improving the vibrancy of food ventures and food security within Wyoming.

There is amazing work being done across Wyoming and the time is right to take the next step to strengthen the collective voice of all food system members. Attend and take advantage of the opportunity to expand networks, build relationships, share ideas and mobilize state and regional leaders in innovative and sustainable ways to develop stronger, equitable and more vibrant food systems.

Additional information:

Wyoming's First Lady, Jennie Gordon is scheduled to attend on Saturday the 14th. She will speak about The Wyoming Hunger Initiative and participate in a functional working group meeting.

Conference sessions, 1:30-5:30 on Friday the 13th and 8:30-5:30 on Saturday the 14th. (event registration opens at 12:00 on Friday at the UW/Casper College Union Building, 3rd floor)

Lunch provided on Saturday the 14th. Water, coffee and light snacks provided.

Lodging- Event registration does not equal hotel reservations. Attendees must make their own hotel reservations. Below are a few Casper hotels that have blocked rooms (at a discounted rate) for the conference. (There are a mix of double/single occupancy rooms available)

Rooms blocked at the Ramkota Hotel and Quality Inn. (85.00 a night plus tax). Mention the Wyoming Food Coalition. This rate includes breakfast and hotel fitness room access.

Conference organizers are pleased to announce a limited number of Conference Travel Scholarships, to help defray a portion of the cost of travel and lodging. (These scholarships are not available to State or Federal employees) These are reimbursable scholarships. Contact organizer for details/information.

Check the Wyoming Food Coalition Conference Facebook page (operational 8 November)for detailed conference agenda and preparation materials.

If you cannot get to Casper, conference sessions will be broadcast via Zoom. Contact the organizer if you want to participate remotely via Zoom.

Alternate Conference Dates: 10-11 January 2020. These are back-up conference dates, used ONLY if weather prevents travel for the primary dates.

**This event is organized by UW Extension working with Wyoming Farm to Plate Taskforce, Wyoming Food For Thought Project, Central Wyoming College, Wyoming Farmers Market Association, Rooted in Wyoming, Wyoming Business Council, Wyoming Food Justice Coalition, Center for Popular Research, Education and Policy, Wyoming Department of Agriculture, Wyoming Department of Education, WYOFRESH, Fresh Foods Wyoming, Riverton Local Food Hub. Want to be a contributing partner? Contact the event organizer!

Friday, December 13, 2019; 12:30 PM - Saturday, December 14, 2019 5:30 PM
Casper College, Union Building
125 College Dr. Casper WY 82601

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