FoodLab Detroit at Detroit Startup Week
Monday, May 8, 2017
FoodLab Detroit at Detroit Startup Week

Perhaps more than any other city, Detroit has the most robust ecosystem of food growers, producers and retailers.  This year, FoodLab Detroit has been asked to create a food entrepreneur track for Detroit Startup Week (DSW) that celebrates the unique innovation and new thinking of Detroit's food entrepreneurs.  We could not be more excited to bring together a diverse lineup of food businesses and growers from across Detroit to not only celebrate the economic progress we're making; but more importantly to discuss our current challenges and emerging opportunities!

Detroit Startup Week (DSW), presented by JP Morgan Chase, is the annual business festival that take place from May 22-26 at Masonic Temple.

This year’s food entrepreneurship track will feature culinary thinkers, chefs and farmers exploring the state of food in Detroit – how it’s grown, accessed, eaten and innovated. And how our attitudes toward what we eat may change the trajectory of Detroit local food economy.

See the schedule below:

Monday, May 22, 2017
3pm – 4pm
MSU Detroit Center, 3408 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201
Fair wages, Fair Market Prices from Farm to Table
This panel discussion will identify the challenges and opportunities in wage equity across the chain of labor, looking specifically at farm-to-table restaurants. What role can farm and food business owners, policymakers, and eaters play in ensuring that values-driven restaurants can succeed while paying their workers fairly, and compensating farmers so they and their workers can earn a living wage?
Moderated by: Eitan Sussman, Keep Growing Detroit. The panelist include: Carolyn Leadley, Rising Pheasant Farms; Chef Marc Djozlija, Wright & Co.; Rohani Foulkes, The Farmer's; Ben Hall, Russell Street Deli

Tuesday, May 23, 2017
3pm – 4pm
Good Cakes And Bakes, 19363 Livernois Ave, Detroit, MI 48221
Building Brand Ambassadors: How to connect w. online foodies
One of the trickier elements of running a successful restaurant in the 21st century is developing a following with online foodies. These are people who love to gab about food. Tapping into that can mean big things for your food business, but putting up a sign that says “Follow us on ____!” is probably not going to get you a huge amount of new followers, and could easily turn the social media savvy off to your business. This panel discussion will provide effective strategies on how to engage your customers and encourage them to promote your food business online.
Moderated by Valaurian Walker, V.W. Photography. The panelist include: Lisa Ludwinski, Sister Pie; Molly Mitchell, Rose's Fine Foods; Scott Rutterbush, Dine Drink Detroit; April Anderson, Good Cakes & Bakes

Wednesday, May 24, 2017
3pm – 4pm
MSU Detroit Center, 3408 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201
Cooking Up A Business: Lessons for Food Entrepreneurs
Do you have a passion for delicious food and want to create your own business out of it, but have no idea where to start?  This panel discussion isn't just for anyone who is thinking about starting a food business, it's for anyone who is thinking about starting a business, period.  The compelling stories from these entrepreneurs will illustrate it's truly possible to make your entrepreneurial dreams a reality, but you can't do it by yourself, you'll need the support and guidance from mentors, coaches, like-minded peers and industry experts!
Moderated by Jess McClary: The panelist include: Doniss Hicks, Living 4 Life Wellness;  Raphael Wright, Urban Plug L3C; Evan Webber, Nakee & Co.; Jane Bates, GreenHouse Soups & Chili

Friday, May 26, 2017
3pm – 4pm
MSU Detroit Center, 3408 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201
The Hands That Feed Us
Is it economically viable to run small scale farms, in a sustainable way? It takes years of successfully building a farm businesses to get it to a stage where it's a living farm. Come and hear, straight from the horse's mouth, about our farmers' motivations behind opting for small scale farming and the inherent challenges that comes with. And of course, what you can do to support this integral part of our food system.
Moderated by: Emily Staugaitis, Bandhu Gardens. The panelist include: Greg Willerer, Brother Nature, Meiko Krishok, Guerrilla Food; Mark Covington, Georgia Street Community Collective; Andy Chae, Fisheye Farm and Jerry Hebron, Oakland Ave. Farm