Last updated: July 23. 2013 1:02PM - 603 Views

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The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition is partnering with Huntington 30 Mile Meal to host an exhibition of local food producers in the Huntington/ Tri-State Area. The Huntington Local Foods Expo will take place at the Big Sandy Conference Center located in Huntington, WV, on Tuesday July 23 from 3-6pm. Buyers and growers from neighboring counties such as Wayne, Lincoln, Boone, Kanawha, Putnam and Mason are invited to register now to participate.

The event will provide regional food growers, producers and processors with an opportunity to connect with buyers from restaurants, grocery stores, schools, institutions and other food venues. Not intended for individual consumers, the event is intended to help foster long-term sales relationships between these buyers and farmers. It is one of a series of regional Expos to be hosted throughout the state by the WV Food & Farm Coalition and local partners, with support provided by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture via a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant.

Registration costs $15 for all attendees of the Expo. Farmers who register before July 16 deadline will receive a display table to set up information about their farm and are encouraged to bring another representative from their farm free of charge. Buyers will enjoy a sampling showcase of locally grown fruits and vegetables. An area of exhibition space will be reserved for organizations and agencies providing products and services that to assist producers, such as product liability insurance, food packaging products, training, and affordable loans. Those interested in a booth can contact the event organizers for details.

An additional outcome of the event is to create a Buyer Grower Directory of local food growers and buyers interested in volume sales, to increase the overall sale of locally produced goods in West Virginia. Huntington has several restaurants already sourcing local products and a more established network of farmers will make buying local more accessible. The Directory will include detailed information about the needs of each buyer and the products available from each grower; it will be distributed to attendees at the Expo and made available to the public. Buyers or growers who wish to be included, but are not able to attend the Expo, can still sign up for the Directory until July 16.

To register for the Expo and/or the Directory, visit http://goo.gl/pvhjz or register by phone by calling 304-697-3007 to speak with the event coordinator Lauren Kemp. Please direct all questions to 304-697-3007 or send an email to lauren@unlimitedfuture.org.

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