Indiana Grown Marking Second Anniversary

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(Image courtesy of Indiana Grown) (Image courtesy of Indiana Grown)

A state-supported initiative designed to spotlight Hoosier farmers and artisans is celebrating its second anniversary and its member development manager is eyeing a major milestone. Heather Tallman says the Indiana Grown initiative currently has more than 800 members, which she believes will surpass 1,000 within the next five months. She says the buy local effort is now focused on making more connections, including working with producers, wineries and breweries to increase collaboration.

Tallman, who was named to the position with Indiana Grown in February, says requests related to the program continues to grow. "I think that retailers and distribution companies see the value in being able to have a little but of help in quickly finding, assessing and locating local foods, because there is definitely a demand for it," she tells Inside INdiana Business. Tallman says even schools are inquiring about hooking up with more locally-sources produce and goods for both students and employees.

She has enjoyed watching program participants "co-mingle" ideas and products and use Indiana Grown as a way to network. "We have people raising berries who are selling to people making jams on a large scale. We also have people are using Red Gold tomatoes in their barbeque sauce or Hurst Beans in their soups," Tallman says, "so getting them together in a fashion that offers up creativity and just a market for that and giving them a little bit of reassurance that if they make these products -- raise that protein, raise that produce, make that sauce -- that we're going to help them find an avenue to which to get it out to the public."

In honor of the second anniversary of Indiana Grown, state officials are hosting the inaugural Monumental Marketplace on Friday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. It will feature 100 participating vendors in a farmers market-style event on Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis. to celebrate the initiative’s second anniversary. You can connect to more about Indiana Grown by clicking here.

Indiana Grown Member Development Manager Heather Tallman says requests related to the program continues to grow.
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