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Grow Maryland & Rural Maryland Council present the inaugural

Grow Maryland Summit

The Future of Value-Added Agriculture

December 1, 2016 • Kent Island


Scheduled for Thursday, December 1, 2016 at Chesapeake Bay Beach Club on Kent Island, Grow Maryland’s Value-Added Agriculture Summit will bring together an estimated 150+ attendees for this first year event. Meet Maryland’s robust and diverse value-added agriculture industry, which includes everything from apples, ales, agritourism and angus. The morning will include a panel of experts who will provide an overview of the value-added landscape, including updates on some of the latest industry studies. In the afternoon, breakouts will include tracks on innovation, law & liability, trends, and tourism, as well as starting small, and scaling up!

Attendees will include value-added agriculture producers and small food businesses, state and county agency representatives (Planning & Zoning, Fire & Life Safety, Health, Economic Development Offices, Tourism, Commerce, Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture), state and county elected officials, food and agriculture organizations, media and bloggers, and food policy organizations.


8:00 – 9:00               Breakfast & Registration

9:00 – 9:10               Welcome from Grow Maryland

9:10 – 9:20               Welcome: Craig Beyrouty, Dean, College of Agriculture & Natural Resources, University of Maryland

9:20 – 10:30             State of Maryland’s Value-Added Agriculture Industry (Joe Tassone, Maryland Department of Planning; Dale Hawks, USDA; Grow & Fortify Staff)

10:30 – 10:45           Break

10:45 – 12:00           Rapid Fire Panel: Faces of Maryland’s Value-Added Agriculture Industry (Drew Baker, Old Westminster Winery; Dean Bryant, Roseda Farm; Meaghan & Shane Carpenter, Hex Ferments; Martha Clark, Clark’s Elioak Farm; John Dove, Love Dove Farms; Tara Guevara, Big Purple Farm; Bill McKnew, McKnew Chipping; Jamie Tiralla, Monnett Farms)

12:00 – 1:00             Lunch & Networking

1:00 – 2:00               Breakout 1: INNOVATION. Learn about some of the exciting value-added agriculture initiatives from our colleagues outside of Maryland (Kellie Hinkle, Loudoun County Office of Economic Development; Whitney Pipkin, Food, Environment Writer; Ashlee Dugan, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture)

1:00 – 2:00               Breakout 2: STARTING SMALL. Learn how these Maryland businesses got their start and what sustainable growth looks like to them (John Dove, Love Dove Farms; Kedrick Smith, Huckle’s Brands; Jay Falstad, Calico Fields Lavender Farm)

1:00 – 2:00               Breakout 3: LAW. Come to this session to learn about agritourism, liability, labor, FLSA, branding and trademarking (Sarah Everhart, University of Maryland Agriculture Law Center; Carlos Turcios, Department of Labor; Hank Abromson, Miles & Stockbridge)

1:00 – 2:00               Breakout 4: TOURISM. Value-added agriculture and tourism can go hand in hand. Attend this session to learn why trails and cultural tourism can play a big role in this industry (Maryland Office of Tourism; Nick Redding, Preservation Maryland; Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission)

2:00 – 3:00               Breakout 1: INNOVATION. Emerging models for creative ways to support agricultural producers and building community along the way (Beth Brewster, Chesapeake Culinary Center; James Zoller, Roving Radish; Audrey Swanenburg. Chesapeake Farm to Table)

2:00 – 3:00               Breakout 2: MARKETPLACE. When starting a value-added agricultural business, it’s important to understand consumer demands and trends. Come to this session to learn more! (Renee Catacalos, On Our Plate Chesapeake; Keirstan Kure, The Common Market)

2:00 – 3:00               Breakout 3: LAW. Politics doesn’t have to be scary. Learn how to build a support network, and be your own best advocate from our panel of experts (Kevin Atticks, Grow & Fortify; Charlotte Davis, Rural Maryland Council; Kurt Fuchs, MidAtlantic Farm Credit; Josh Hastings, Eastern Shore Land Conservancy)

2:00 – 3:00               Breakout 4: SCALING UP. Everybody starts small. Learn how these businesses have scaled up successfully over the years. (Ned Atwater, Atwater’s; Adam Benesch, Union Craft Brewing; Michele Tsucalas, Michele’s Granola; Matt Cedro, FireFly Farms; Meaghan & Shane Carpenter, Hex Ferments)

3:00 – 4:00               NETWORKING HAPPY HOUR! – Join us for a quick happy hour overlooking the bay, featuring local eats & samples of craft beverages (beer, wine and spirits)!

Share, Learn, Grow

Details. Lunch and the afternoon reception are both included with registration.

Sessions. Join us for general sessions through lunch, then choose from four tracks in the afternoon: innovation, marketplace, growth, and law.

Members of the MWA, BAM and MDG receive discounted registration. Ask your org for the promo code.

Registration for the 2016 Grow Maryland Summit is now closed.

Thanks to the generout support of our sponsors, partners, and—of course—all registrants. We look forward to a wonderful day of discussion and learning.

Check Out Our Curbside Consultants!

Attendees can schedule quick one-on-one consultations with our Curbside Consultants throughout the day.

Henry Abromson – Business and Intellectual Property Attorney, Miles & Stockbridge
  • Business start-up and entity selection
  • Branding and trademark / trade secret protection
  • Business contracts
  • Employment and independent contractor relationships
Kevin Atticks - Grow & Fortify
  • Value-added business startup
  • Alcohol licensing
  • Regulations for alcohol and food processing
Drew Baker – Founder, Old Westminster Winery / Maryland Wine Cellars
  • Planting a vineyard
  • Starting a wine business
  • Creating a brand
Michele Cable – Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation, Maryland Department of Agriculture
  • Discuss MALPF easement permitted and restricted uses in general.
  • Learn about the MALPF policies that impact what type of agriculturally related activities, uses and operations are permitted on the MALPF easement properties? What, if any, MALPF approval is required?
  • Question about how the MALPF views various types of value-added agriculture in terms of the easement restrictions.
  • Discuss what type of “homework” should be done when considering purchasing a property that is encumbered with a MALPF easement? The importance of understanding the terms of the easement before buying the property.
  • Discuss the process of applying to MALPF to sell an agricultural easement on your property.
Peter Ettinger – Executive Director, Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship
  • Explaining your idea in a way that impacts the customer
  • What do you want to be vs. what you want to do – the impact of customer segmentation?
  • Wash, rinse, repeat and scalability
Dorothy Fuchs – Purple Dot PR
  • Provide creative ideas for conduction special events or cross promotions
  • Provide basic outline for developing a marketing plan
  • Give consultation with how best to work with the media
Keirstan Kure – Procurement Associate, Common Market Mid-Atlantic
  • Market trends for institutional food service procurement
  • Assisting small producers in expanding to the wholesale market
  • Sustainable agriculture practices
  • Coordination supply logistics
Ginger Myers - Marketing Specialist for Ag and Natural Resources, University of Maryland Extension
  • Actionable Small Business Guidance
  • Diversified Marketing Channels and Strategies
  • Access to Land Grant University Resources Nationwide
  • Specialty Foods Business Development and Regulations in Maryland
  • Support fir Marketers and makers from concept to market
  • Next Generation Agritourism
  • Marketing; Growing Digitally
Renee Novak - Field Director, Preservation Maryland
  • Historic Structure Rehabilitation Tax Credits
  • Technical preservation assistance
  • Historic review process consulting
  • National Register consultation
Ken Prager – CPA
  • Choosing the right tax entity and structure
  • Tax return preparation and effective tax planning
  • Accounting and bookkeeping issues
  • Overall business consulting
Sam Riley – Managing Director, Buzzed Brewery Consulting
  • What to expect if you’re thinking of opening a brewery
  • Current state and growth of the beer industry, and the opportunity for new partnerships in craft beer
  • Marketing and branding in general – how to grow your business and promote your brand through social media and other online tools
Shelby Watson – Agricultural Marketing Specialist, Maryland Department of Agriculture
  • The Maryland’s Best Program
  • The Farmers Markets Promotion Program
  • The Farmers Market Nutrition Program
  • Homegrown by Heroes Program
  • Maryland’s Best Restaurant Promotion
  • The Farmers Market Price Reporting Program
Bruce Weaver – Business and Cooperative Specialist/State Energy Coordinator, Rural Development, United State Department of Agriculture
  • Value- Added Producer Grant
    • What farm industries are eligible?
    • Amount of funds available and how much can be applied for
    • Matching funds and eligible/ineligible expenses
  • Rural Energy for America Program (REAP)

Conference Partners

Platinum Sponsors

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors

Supporting Organizations

Special Thanks to Maryland Dept. of Agriculture’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program for a grant to support the promotion of specialty crops at the Summit!