6th Annual Food Entrepreneur Conference around the corner

Aspiring entrepreneurs, small farmers and small business owners are invited to attend the sixth installment of the Food Entrepreneur Conference on March 21-22 at the Center for Advanced Science, Innovation, and Commerce (CASIC) in the Auburn Research Park.

Attendees will hear inspiring stories from several successful food entrepreneur guests, including keynote speaker Stacy Brown, founder of the Auburn-based Chicken Salad Chick. After initially having her booming, home-operated chicken salad business shut down due to health department regulations, Brown now has more than 60 Chicken Salad Chick franchises throughout the South.

Robert Armstrong, owner of G Momma’s “Southern style bite-sized cookies” will also be a keynote speaker and share his journey to food entrepreneurship. G Momma’s is based in Armstong’s hometown of Selma – a decision he says he made to help support the town’s struggling economy and keep its rich history alive.

Armstrong and Brown will be joined by Jimmy Wright of Wright’s Market in Opelika, who will be able to give advice on getting food products into local grocery stores, as well as Ellie Taylor from the Alabama Grocer’s Association. Experts from Auburn University, the Alabama Department of Public Health, and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (ACES) will cover topics labeling and testing regulations, Cottage Food Law certification (necessary to operate a food business from your home), food safety, finances, and marketing.

When registering, attendees can also choose two breakout sessions on topics such as owning and operating a food truck, catering/food service/bakery, Cottage Food Law, USDA meat products, and the innovative aquaponics industry.

The event is sponsored by ACES and Auburn University Food Systems Institute.

Cost to attend is $150 before March 14 and $200 after that. For more information, a full program agenda and registration, visit www.aufsi.auburn.edu/2018-food-entrepreneur-conference or call Regina Crapps at (334) 844-7456. Follow our Food Entrepreneur Conference Facebook page for the most recent event details.