Jan Swinton is the local food coordinator at Pathfinders Resource Conservation and Development serving the Hometown Harvest of SE Iowa region. She has a masters in public administration from Drake University.
Efforts by a group of southeast Iowa producers to create an aggregated marketing organization yielded mixed results.
What would it take to form a group of producers who might act as one?
It would take a legal structure that every member bought into, an efficient mode of marketing and selling that covered transportation costs in the food mark-up, a group of like-minded individuals who really wanted (or needed) to make the project work and an administrator who was a creative problem-solver and sufficiently dedicated to the project.