The 13th Annual Good Food Festival & Conference will be held March 16-18 in Chicago. The Midwest's premier annual celebration of the fast-growing Good Food movement is presented by FamilyFarmed, a leader in promoting locally and sustainably produced food for almost two decades.
The Good Food Festival & Conference will bring together regional and national leaders in local, sustainable food — from farmers to chefs, entrepreneurs to policy makers — to discuss the movement that’s transforming the way we eat.
Held at UIC Forum on the University of Illinois at Chicago campus, the three-day symposium will feature speakers, panel discussions, cooking demos, workshops and more. “Our goal always is to make each year’s Good Food Festival & Conference better than the last,” says Jim Slama, FamilyFarmed’s founder and president. “That’s a high bar. Last year, we had nearly 5,000 attendees, including numerous leading national, state and local policy makers. The 2017 event again will be a must-see for anyone with an interest in a healthier, more sustainable and economically vibrant food system.”
Kicking off on Thursday, March 16 (8:30 a.m.- 6 p.m.), the Good Food Financing & Innovation Conference sponsored by Crain's Chicago Business is a dynamic day that connects funders with food businesses seeking financing. The Financing Fair gives growing food businesses the opportunity to pitch their business plans, plus assists FamilyFarmed’s Good Food Business Accelerator, a program that each year helps nine competitively selected entrepreneurial food and farm businesses get ready for successful investor interaction.
On Friday, March 17 (8:30 a.m.–7 p.m.), the Good Food Trade/Producer/Policy Day focuses on all of these areas, plus the Good Food Industry Showcase, in which more than 100 exhibitors are participating and where buyers and sellers make valuable contacts. This year’s Opening Symposium will be powered by Pecha Kucha, a rapid, visual narrative form of storytelling. Six leaders of the Good Food Movement each tell their story, sharing their knowledge and passion about their work.
Culminating on Saturday, March 18 (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) is the Good Food Festival, a family-friendly day of inspiring speakers, tastings from local food artisans, DIY workshops on the Organic Valley Good Food Commons, chef demos and sampling, an interactive Purple Asparagus Kids’ Corner, and the Good Food Marketplace, a show and sales floor featuring more than 150 farmers, artisanal food producers, retailers, other vendors, and nonprofit organizations — all designed to put Good Food on your family's table!
Participants & Speakers include: Rick Bayless of Frontera Mexican Restaurant Group; Michael Bashaw, president of Whole Foods Market’s Midwest division; Marc Schulman of Eli’s Cheesecake; Rob Levitt of Local Foods and The Butcher & Larder; Chuck Templeton Founder of OpenTable and Managing Director of S2G Ventures; and many more.
Two-Day Pass – $150 ($170 at door) Includes Thursday: Good Food Financing Conference and Friday: Good Food Industry Showcase -and- Networking Reception. Does not include access to Bus Tour.
- Good Food Financing Conference (And Financing Fair) – $110 ($140 at door)
Student tickets available for $45 per ticket, must be currently enrolled and show student ID upon purchase at box office. Access to the Good Food Craft Beverage Reception included.
- Good Food Industry Showcase: Trade & Policy Sessions – $50 ($60 at door) Student tickets available for $20 per ticket, must be currently enrolled and show student ID upon purchase at box office. Access to the Good Food Industry Networking Reception included.
- Good Food Industry Networking Reception – $25 ($30 at door) Ticket provides access to the Good Food Industry Networking Reception only. 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
- Good Food Festival – FREE with online registration Saturday events beginning at 10am or later including exhibitors, the Organic Valley Good Food Commons, Chefs at Play, and Purple Asparagus Kids' Corner.
- Urban Farm Bus Tour & Good Food Festival – $75 (no onsite tickets available) Ticket also provides access to Saturday Good Food Festival. Leaves UIC Forum promptly at 9 a.m. and returns at 12 p.m.
The Good Food Festival & Conference is March 16-18, 2017. UIC Forum is located at 725 W. Roosevelt Road, Chicago, IL 60607. Tickets and free registration available in advance or at the door. To purchase tickets and for a complete itinerary including full list of participating chefs, exhibitors and sponsors, please visit goodfoodfestivals.com and read about it on FamilyFarmed’s Good Food on Every Table.