2014 Conference Presentations
These are available to everyone that attended this years conference. They will be offered to others for a fee shortly.
Click here to get the 2014 Conference presentations and audio files.
Across the nation, a growing number of people are trying to live a healthier lifestyle; and many are also concerned about sustainable agriculture. These two movements culminate with Aronia. A small group of southwest Iowans led the way, cultivating Aronia Melanocarpa on their farms and founding the Midwest Aronia Association in 2008. This indigenous purple berry, packing a nutritional punch, has since set the stage with its tremendous health benefits gaining recognition, and the MAA holds a front row seat in the development of the domestic Aronia market, research, & education. As domestically grown Aronia becomes more prominent in the marketplace, there is a quest by many to learn more. Aronia is growing in popularity as a value-added crop, adding diversification and income for family farms. This is where the MAA comes in, providing a support network for members in 11 states and Canada.
The Association is organized to promote the common interests of Aronia growers. Primary emphasis is education and communication among members. Activities include:
- educating members about marketing aronia
- introduction and education of the general public about Aronia and its value added uses to increase market demand
- improving quality and marketability of Aronia through education and research
- promoting a social and political environment conducive to growing and marketing Aronia
- to facilitate supply network communications from growers to end users
- to network and cooperate with related government agencies, educational institutions, other organizations and private industry to address these stated purposes
As the Midwest Aronia Association President and Aronia grower, I would like to invite you to join us in this journey. We can help you learn more. We offer education through our annual conference, focusing on networking opportunities with other like-minded people, best growing practices, and most up-to-date research; we support our grower member community through development of educational tools and assistance with field days; we offer suggested uses of Aronia through recipe development and circulation; and we nurture relationships with Extensions, Universities, and a multitude of organizations. Whether you are looking to simply learn more about the health benefits of Aronia, or you you are interested in any facet from planting to marketing, you have come to the right place and we welcome you with purple hands!
Melissa Ehrman Johnson, President of the MAA