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UPFE Staff Departure/Arrival:

Neal Curran, the MFC Local Food Projects Coordinator and the UPFE Online Marketplace Coordinator, has accepted a new position outside the UP.  Best of luck Neal!  

Fortunately we have already found an excellent replacement in Courtney Dalman.  Welcome Courtney!

Read on below to hear from Neal and Courtney in their own words.

Together at the Farm: UP Local Food Conference

Saturday July 30th 
UP Research and Extension Center, Chatham

Save the date!
More details regarding this event will be forthcoming in later editions of The Plowshare.


A message from Courtney:

Hi. My name is Courtney Dalman and I will be taking over Neal’s work with the UP Food Exchange after he leaves in mid-April. Until then, I will be working at his side as he teaches me the ins and outs of his position and of the online marketplace to ensure a smooth transition.
I have been working in the produce department for the past year and a half, and will continue do so, as well as maintain and build on the foundation that has been established to make the UPFE a success.  I’m looking forward to getting to know you all in the coming months. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have at
Courtney and Neal, passing the UPFE torch
Courtney and Neal, passing the UPFE torch

A Message from Neal:

Hello All:
I recently accepted a position coordinating a food hub in Durham, NC and will begin in mid-April. It pains me to be leaving the UP and all you wonderful people, but ultimately it is the decision that feels best for my family. I’m very grateful to have worked with you all and have learned a lot along the way. I will miss seeing you all around and will think back on this experience with fondness. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me before or after I depart. You can reach me at my personal email address:
Neal Curran
Local Food Projects Coordinator

Farming Far North: The North Farm to Host On-Farm Short Courses

Season Extension –  April 17 · 1-6 pm
Small Farm Systems – June 26 · 1-6 pm          
Whole Farm Health – August 28 · 1-6 pm
Seed Saving– October 9 · 1-6 pm
Extension short courses are scheduled at the North Farm to support Upper Peninsula citizens’ use of season extension technologies to produce food both for themselves and for the local markets.

The primary goal of The North Farm, a collaborative operation supported by Michigan State University Extension and Michigan State University AgBioResearch located in Chatham, Michigan, is to support the growth of new farmers producing nutrient-rich food for Upper Peninsula markets.
The North Farm is hosting a series of MSU Extension short courses starting in April on topics designed for market gardeners, small farms, and skill-seekers interested in diversified vegetable production. These short courses are an in-depth exploration of farming fundamentals and best practices for diversified vegetable growers.
Each five-hour learning session has an emphasis on hands-on activities so participants can practice what they learn, and includes the cost of materials for a project. “
All workshops will be held on Sundays on-site starting at 1 pm EST and will include a combination of experiential and classroom-based learning. Short courses qualify for education hours through the MSU Extension Master Gardener program.  

Registration is required for these events and can be accessed at here
Questions? Contact Abbey Palmer at or 906-439-5114.

UPFE presentation to Gogebic Range Foodies

April 14 5:30-7pm
Women’s Club Room of the Ironwood Memorial Building

UPFE will be speaking to a group of folks interested in local food in the Ironwood area. Natasha Lantz, UPFE Central UP Director, Ray Sharp, UPFE Western UP Director, and Courtney Dalman, MFC Local Food Projects Coordinator, will be presenting information about upcoming UPFE projects, as well as ongoing programs such as our online marketplace.  For more information about this meeting or the Gogebic Range Foodies, contact Amy Nosal at

Stipend available for emerging farmers

Michigan's Emerging Farmers 

Through a USDA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Grant the MSU Center for Regional Food Systems (CRFS), Michigan Food and Farming Systems (MIFFS) and MSU Student Organic Farm will provide a limited number of $2,000 stipends to beginning farmers in Michigan. Each $2,000 stipend requires applicant matching savings of at least $1,000 intended for farm-related costs. The stipends are designed to help people in their first years of farming to develop and stabilize their farming business, increasing its long-term viability. 

All pre-applications must be submitted by June 27, 2016 (deadline extended) and all requirements must be fulfilled and the appropriate documentation submitted by November 31, 2016. 

For questions and comments, please email Shakara Tyler at

Vegetable Skill Building Class

April 2nd, 2016  8:50 am - 4 pm
Bay Mills Community College West Campus
Migizi Hall   Brimley, MI  
$10 participation fee (includes lunch)


Come and learn a variety of essential skills from soil fertility to season extension.  
For more information visit

Keweenaw Beekeeping Club

A new club has been formed to support those interested in beekeeping in the Houghton/Hancock area.  The club first met in February with about 17 engaged members and is growing.  The monthly meetings are open to all who are interested and are free of charge.  For more information contact Kathleen Harter at

Marquette County Conservation District Tree Sale

Tree seedling orders are being accepted from now through April 1st through the Marquette County Conservation District.  The catalog and order forms can be found here.

Order pick-up is Friday, April 29 from 5 - 8 p.m. or Saturday 9 am – 12 noon at the Marquette Board of Light and Power, 2200 Wright Street, Marquette.

For more information contact the MCD at (906) 226-8871 ext 102.

Central Food Hub Upcoming Meetings

UPFE Policy Committee Meeting

First Tuesday of every month
Tuesday, April 5, 9 am at Marquette Food Co-op
Contact Natasha Lantz at or (906) 225-0671 x 711 for more information

CUP Farm to School Committee Meeting

Wednesday, April 
Contact Sarah Monte for more information at or(906) 225-0671 x 723

Western Food Hub Upcoming Meetings

WUP Food Hub Steering Committee

Meetings are held at the Hancock Health Department, 540 Depot Street, behind McGanns Hardware.  Contact Ray Sharp at (906) 482-7382 x 163 for more information.


Eastern Food Hub Upcoming Meetings

EUP Healthy Access and Food Hub Steering Committee

Third Wednesday of every month
April 20, 9 am CLM Conservation District office
Contact Michelle Walk at or (906) 6368 or Heather Hemming at for more information.


More to read. . .

Check out UPREC's monthly newsletter here

Check out MFC's newsletter here

Check out UPFE's website here

Copyright © 2016 UP Food Exchange, All rights reserved.

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