Food and Finance Summit a Smashing Success

This year’sĀ inaugural Food and Finance Summit was widely praised as a major success. The day was hosted by Alex Moore of Cascade Harvest Coalition and sponsored by Slow Money NW, WSU Jefferson County Extension, Whole Foods Markets, Fort Worden State Park, OlyCAP, and WSDA.

Slow Money Executive Director Ari Derfel gave an impassioned keynote that placed our agricultural resources in the context of social justice and conservation. The address was followed by an intimate panel that featured a farmer and her local angel investor. The two originally met through Jefferson County’s groundbreaking local financing model, Local Investing Opportunities Network.

Later, Whole Foods foragers Harv Singh and Denise Breyley and Mt. Townsend Creamery co-founder Matt Day helped local entrepreneurs navigate the challenges of scaling up for retail, including how to finance expansion.

The community provided a tremendous amount of positive feedback. Here are some examples:

“The Summit did a great job of grounding, inspiring, and celebrating. Ari was a great choice. The presence of impressive buyers with good credentials brought real value to a day spent away from the farm, kitchen or office.”

“Fantastic. Jam-packed schedule, great time management, wonderful speakers and particpants.”

“I get so wrapped up in production, I forget about this movement that I am a part of. It was great to be reminded of how huge this really is.”