Stefan Meyer, General Project Coordinator.
My story began on a family farm in SW MN, where as a 4th generation farmer, my family raised the standard fare of corn, soybeans, and their livestock of choice (turkeys). After leaving the conventional family farm, I moved out to the Pacific Northwest and discovered Permaculture, Biodynamics and AgroEcology, opening a whole new path of working with the land.
Back in MN, I started Growing Lots Urban Farm with the help of a local non-profit, and grew the farm for 5 years as a CSA and Market Farm alongside friends and volunteers. Since then, I’ve spent time farming in SW Colorado, as well as the wooded countryside of Mora, MN. My passion around farming is personified by small-scale diversified farming systems that blend into the regional environment, enhancing the productivity and health of the land for all species, while maintaining a strong focus on the power of local farms as the economic base for small communities. I joined the AgroEcology Center in the Spring of 2017 as the Farm Manager. Since then I have been acting as the Finland Farmers Market Coordinator, and for the last year participating in the Finland Food Chain process. As the General Project Coordinator, I will be keeping an eye to the overarching goals of the project, assisting the other coordinators in their work, and seeking out future funding opportunities.
I’m Cindy Hale of Clover Valley Farms (the vinegar lady) and am thrilled to have been hired to serve as the Producer and Infrastructure Coordinator for the Finland Food Chain project.
Our farm is just south of Two Harbors on the Homestead Rd, 4 miles in from Lake Superior. We have a highly diversified farm growing a variety of small fruits, tree fruits, herbs and a few veggies. We breed and use both sheep and rabbits in a rotational grazing system so they do most of the mowing and we get a diversity of high value products from them…sheep (wool, meat & hides) and rabbits (meat…I have hides in the freezer if anyone wants them!). We have been farming for 12 years and experimented with lots of things before finding the right balance for our farm and us. I look forward to sharing our experiences with you and hearing more about the innovative ways you all grow food & fiber too!
I’m Laurie Kallinen, and I’m the General Coordinator for the Finland Food Chain project. I was born and raised in farm country in southern MN, and grew up on garden produce and visiting the family farm.
I have worked in administrative positions, managed cottage businesses, and worked in food service, most recently as Northern Lights Assistant Food & Beverage Manager.
My interest in supporting local businesses and producers has steadily grown over the years, leading me to begin keeping my own small backyard flock of chickens 8 years ago. I love connecting the dots; connecting people with the benefits of wild harvesting, locally grown produce, fresh eggs, eating seasonally, preserving the harvest… I look forward to learning more and helping build relationships between local producers and local markets, and finding new ways to help our community grow in food security and sustainability. I’m honored to be a part of such a wonderful group as the FFC and look forward to working with them and our community to build a better future for our region!