October and November 2003: 1st
series of Farmer Chef Classes held at WCTC for ACF Chefs Four
classes presented in demonstration format by prominent guest chefs
and some of southern Wisconsin’s finest family farmers. From
heirloom tomatoes in the late summer to heritage turkeys in the
fall, this series provided an opportunity to increase knowledge of
working with local, seasonal ingredients.
1st Farmer Chef meeting held at Dancing Ganesha Restaurant
In Milwaukee the first annual Farmer-Chef Connection meeting
occurred on Sunday, February 22nd 2004 at Dancing Ganesha
Restaurant and was designed by our regional Slow Food convivium to
foster collaboration between local farmers, chefs, and retailers
committed to expanding and strengthening local, seasonal, and
sustainable food networks. Initially we were hoping for 20 people.
As word got out we ended up with 28 growers, 16 chefs and 19 other
interested parties including DATCP – Department of Agriculture,
Trade and Consumer Protection, the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board,
UW Extension, Town and Country Resource Conservation and
Development and the Milwaukee Public Market.
UW Extension conducted a survey of food buyers in southeastern
Wisconsin – grocery stores, restaurants, nursing homes,
public/parochial schools and private clubs. Over 60 per cent of the
executive chefs from country and city clubs returned their sheets
with an active interest in buying more locally grown food.
Chef Connection meeting and Farmer Showcase held at WCTC Education
Center with 107 attendees: 44 farmers, 32 food buyers, 13 culinary
students, 3 culinary instructors, 15 others (reporter, extension,
local food organizers and university). Farmer chef panel discussion
of opportunities and challenges of local food followed by
opportunity for food producers and food buyers to
Us Plant Some Seeds: (36 kb PDF)
Invitation mailed to farmers
Brochure2: (252 kb PDF)
Invitation mailed to professional foodservice buyers
State Farmer article 3/18/05 (24 kb PDF)
Farmer Chef Guide. This local food directory evolved from our
Farmer Chef panel discussion and farm showcase held at Waukesha
County Technical College (WCTC) in March and was based on a design
layout used by Philadelphia’s White Dog Café Foundation. With
several additions, the farms listed were ones that attended the
aforementioned winter meeting.
set of Farmer Chef Classes held at WCTC for ACF Chefs and local
food enthusiasts. These demonstration classes were conducted by two
prominent guest chefs, a local hobby orchardist and one of
Wisconsin’s finest farmstead cheesemakers.
Chef Series 2005 (40 kb PDF) A
description of two classes, one on Wisconsin artisan cheese and the
other on antique apples, quince and fall berries.
release, WCTC chefs (20 kb PDF) A
press release concerning the WCTC classes
Cheese Class (1.8MB PDF)
Invitation for artisan cheese class
Fruit Class (628 kb PDF)
Invitation for fall fruit class
application for Farmer Chef Connection project submitted by Rose
Skora of UWEX Kenosha/Racine to Risk Management Agency of the
funded by RMA
April 2006: 2nd
Farmer Chef Guide assembled, printed and distributed to chefs and
other food buyers in 10 counties.
August 2006: Sourced
locally grown food for three days of menus at National SARE
Conference; used local chefs, bakers and food processors to prepare
various menu items.
local foods report (20 kb PDF)
Summary of food sourcing for SARE conference
06 Conference menu (240 kb PDF)
Copy of SARE conference menu and names of farms who supplied food
for each meal
Farmer Chef Guide, revised fall version of April 2006 edition
January 2007: Start
of Risk Management Grant
January 2007: Farmer
Chef Connection Winter Showcase held at Oconomowoc Lake Club; 14
farms participated along with 60 attendees from American Culinary
Federation Chefs of Milwaukee
and expanded databases of chefs and farmers in Sheboygan, Ozaukee,
Washington, Dodge, Jefferson, Waukesha, Milwaukee, Kenosha, Racine
and Walworth counties.
Your Farm on the Menu”
An educational event for farmers held at Michael Fields
Agricultural Institute with 60 attendees: 2 chef panelists, 50
farmers, and 8 others (reporter, extension, Hmong interpreter, REAP
Food Group, DATCP). Panel discussion with farmers and chefs who
have experience working together followed by a discussion of food
safety issues involved with selling to restaurants. Two afternoon
breakout sessions – one on post-harvest handling and the other
focused on meat sales. All the handout material from this event has
been incorporated into this website’s Farmer submenus.
to Michael Fields for "Putting Your Farm on the Menu" event
(120 kb PDF)
on event in The Wisconsin State Farmer (56 kb PDF)
on cooperatives sharing ideas for marketing in the Wisconsin State
Farmer (56 kb PDF)
June 2007: Back
to the Land tour of a pasture-based farm
Chefs had a unique opportunity to visit a farm that raises
grass-fed Murray Grey cattle along with poultry, turkeys and lamb.
Attendees included 7 chefs, 6 farmers and 9 others (DATCP,
extension, NRCS, farmers’ market, community activist). Following
the tour, Chef Jack Kaestner (Oconomowoc Lake Club) provided
tastings of pastured beef, poultry and eggs while discussing
successful cooking techniques for grass-fed meat.
Farmer Chef Guide
The fourth edition of a local food directory specifically targeted
at professional food buyers; the glossary from this guide has been
incorporated into the Farmer Chef Connection website.
to the Land tour for chefs featured an urban farm that raises
heirloom vegetables. Attendees included 15 chefs/food buyers, 2
farmer hosts, and 6 others (UW Extension, Slow Food and culinary