Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Business accelerator for women class of 2022 announced

Amber Betts
WSDA Communications  

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) Foundation announced the 2022 class of the Women’s Farm2Food Accelerator last week. Of the 50 women chosen to participate from Oregon, Nevada, and Washington, 16 were selected from Washington state.

The online accelerator, funded with Specialty Crop Block Grant funds from the three states, will help women farmers and entrepreneurs with food and beverage products explore expanding into new markets. Participants will receive training in marketing, product development, food safety, packaging and knowing your costs. Training will help women farmers and entrepreneurs launch new products or enhance existing products.

The 15-week Women’s Farm2Food Accelerator is grouped into four course areas:

    • Launching Your Product
    • Understanding Customers and Product Value
    • Product Development
    • Pricing and Pitching to Buyers

“This program exemplifies the mission of WSDA to increase the economic viability of farmers and food businesses, with resources prioritized for historically underrepresented farmers and ranchers, including women, minority, and small business owners,” WSDA Director Derek Sandison said.

Washington women selected for this program include:

    • Abbey T. Masciarotte, of Duck or Bump, LLC
    • Ariel Dorantes or Dorantes Orchards
    • Danielle Bock of Coco Churro
    • Emily Asmus, of Dovetail Enterprises
    • Erica Hernandez, Colibri Farm
    • Hayley Trageser of Fruitful Designs 
    • Karen Puyleart of April Joy Farm     
    • Kristina Kelly
    • Kristine Robinson
    • Mia Devine of Small Acres, LLC
    • Michelle Alger of Fable Farms LLC  
    • Natalie Evans of We Be Jamin' LLC.
    • Rebecca Frances Minna of Prospore              
    • Renee Kalsbeek  of Mamas Garden LLC         
    • Sharon Kaplan of Fruit Forest Farm, Meermaid's Treasures      
    • Stephanie Schlitz

In addition to the online training, the program will provide opportunities for one-on-one consulting with product development, pricing strategies and providing access to marketing specialists for the participants. Thanks to support from WSDA, the women will be able to display their products at the upcoming Good Food Mercantile in Portland, Oregon in April 2022.

NASDA Foundation collaborates with the Oregon Department of Agriculture, Washington State Department of Agriculture, Nevada Department of Agriculture, Oregon State University Food Innovation Center, and Union Kitchen to develop and administer the 15-week training program.  

Visit to learn more about the Women’s Farm2Food Accelerator.