Submitted by Brandy Brabham, WVU Extension Agent-Roane County, 304-927-0975 or brandy.brabham@mail.wvu.edu

The Mid-Ohio Valley Growers Association, a cooperative group of regional farmers selling local foods to regional schools, restaurants, retail outlets, and individuals in the Mid-Ohio Valley region of West Virginia, has set its annual membership meeting and new member invitational pot-luck for Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at the Roane County Family Health Care basement meeting room in Spencer, WV.

The Potluck dinner begins at 5:00 pm and the business meeting will start at 6:30 pm. Attendees are asked to please bring a covered dish, side, dessert, or drink to share. This meeting will be open to the public at no cost.

People currently growing crops or raising meat animals or other local food products, producing value-added products, or those interested in beginning to grow or raise food to market with this cooperative are invited and encouraged to attend.

Currently the cooperative has gardeners and farmers from Clay, Calhoun, Jackson, Putnam, Roane, Wirt, and Wood Counties in West Virginia and markets locally grown foods under the Mid-Ohio Valley Edibles (MOVE) brand throughout this region and the surrounding area.

A brief membership meeting will be held, where participants will learn about how successful the marketing and educational efforts of the cooperative were in the last year and discuss plans for the upcoming season. Current members of the regional cooperative will also be asked to vote on a board of directors.

The bulk of this meeting will focus on how the group can work more cooperatively and involve more farmers. Volunteer board members, paid cooperative coordinators, participating cooperative farmers, and other organizational representatives will be on hand for a question and answer session.

Topics to be discussed include marketing opportunities and needed products, training needs and opportunities for regional farmers, utilizing the on-line marketing tool for new and current members of the cooperative, food safety concerns and responsibilities for all farmers, packaging and marketing materials available to cooperative members, and farm-to-school opportunities.

The address for Roane County Family Health Care is 146 Williams Drive, Spencer, WV 25276. Participants are asked to enter through the front doors and precede to the meeting room in the basement. For directions to the meeting, please call the WVU-Roane County Extension Office at (304) 927-0975. If you are unable to attend the meeting, but would like to learn more about the Association and its cooperative efforts, please contact coordinator@movedibles.com.

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