There are growing indications that the state is well-situated for dramatic growth in the agriculture and food processing industries. Today on March 14, many of the state’s major buyers and suppliers are expected to explore partnerships during the Pure Michigan Business Connect (PMBC) Agriculture Summit at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Michigan.

Since 2011, PMBC summits have brought together purchasers and suppliers in 25 distinct industries, including agriculture, automotive, aerospace, manufacturing and energy. The matchmaking gatherings have facilitated $5.73 billion in revenue for Michigan companies, while creating or retaining 27,941 jobs, according to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC).

“There are increasing opportunities for Michigan businesses in agriculture and food processing,” said PMBC Director Ryan Michael. “A critical ingredient in creating successful and sustainable enterprises is understanding industry trends and building a cost efficient, profitable supply chain. The building blocks for that model are at the agricultural summit.”

The event features a close-up look at the ever-changing agriculture industry, a vastly important part of Michigan’s economy.

Along with matchmaking meetings, the summit will feature two speakers: H. Christopher Peterson, professor of agriculture, food and resource economics at Michigan State University, and Tod Pepin, senior vice president of foods merchandising at Grand Rapids-based Meijer Inc.

In recent years, several projects have helped ignite Michigan’s agriculture and food processing industry, supporting Michigan farmers and positioning businesses for emerging opportunities in the subscription-meal delivery service and global markets. Michigan currently recognizes March as Food and Agriculture Month.

“Michigan’s vast and efficient supply chain and logistics system provides a cost-effective distribution system,” said Jeff Mason, CEO of the MEDC, who will be on hand to address summit participants. “From Michigan, farmers and food processing businesses can connect with world markets and have a competitive edge in responding to customer trends.”


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