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Entrepreneurs in the Food Chain

Date: February 8 Location: Law Campus

Law Campus

Innovation at the Intersection of Investment, Entrepreneurship & the Law

The future of a sustainable food system depends on the food entrepreneurs who are innovating new methods to grow and bring healthy food to consumers.  Yet food entrepreneurs have to navigate a daunting, complex maze of laws and regulations. This one-day forum brings together food entrepreneurs, lawyers and law students to explore strategies for overcoming the challenges that food entrepreneurs face.  Panel discussions will examine investment, bringing food to market and delivering food to the consumers.  Mid-day, participants will engage in small group discussions on topics that include food safety, food labeling, intellectual property protection, beverage production, and the meat and seafood infrastructure.

CLE credit approval is pending. The program features leading practitioners experienced in helping food entrepreneurs resolve legal and non-legal issues.

To Register: Click Here

If the registration fee presents a hardship, we will waive it under appropriate circumstances. Please email us with your request.


Check-in: 8:15 AM

Introductions: 8:45 AM

Panel 1: 9:00 - 10:30 AM

Investing in the Success of Food & Farm Businesses

Moderated by: Nellie McAdams, Farm Preservation Director at Rogue Farm Corps and a hazelnut farmer.

Confirmed panelists include:

  • Maia Hardy, Agriculture of the Middle Program Manager at Ecotrust, an organization that focuses on advancing social equity, economic opportunity and environmental well-being for all. 
  • Jesse Lyon, Chair, Food + Beverage/Agriculture Practice at the law firm of Davis Wright Tremaine
  • Alex Mackay, Director of Business Development and Investor Relations of Iroquois Valley Farmland REIT, an organic farmland finance company
  • Narendra Varma, Founder & Director of Our Table Cooperative, a farm cooperative


Panel 2: 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM

Getting Products to Market

Moderated by: Allison Condra, attorney at Davis Wright Tremaine.

Confirmed panelists include:

  • Christopher Bailey, Microenterprise Developer at Hacienda CDC/Portland Mercado, Founder/Owner Bloom Foods
  • David Hill, Founder & President of Food Methods
  • Jillian Hishaw, Founder/CEO of F.A.R.M.S., attorney at Hishaw Law, and Author of Don’t Bet the Farm on Medicaid, Penguin Press, 2018
  • Sarah Masoni, Director of Product & Process Development Program at the Food Innovation Center


Lunch:  Small Group Tabletop Discussions 12:30 - 2:45 PM

Anchored by students, attorneys, food entrepreneurs and other professionals working with food and agricultural businesses, table discussions will take place over lunch. After 45 minutes, people can switch tables. 

Tables will be organized around common issues, including:

  • food labeling
  • food safety
  • intellectual property
  • meat & seafood infrastructure
  • beverage production
  • cell-based meat

Following the tabletop discussions, the large group will reconvene to share what was discussed.

Confirmed table anchors include:

  • Matt Alford, Owner/Operator, Elkhorn Farm & Forage
  • Camas Davis, Founder of the Portland Meat Collective, Executive Director of the Good Meat Project, and author of Killing It
  • Allison Condra, attorney at Davis Wright Tremaine
  • David Ernst, Partner at Davis Wright Tremaine
  • Maggie Finnerty, President & Executive Director, Oregon Entrepreneurs Network
  • Anne Glazer, Partner at Stoel Rives
  • Becky Jenkins, Aquatic Animal Law Fellow at Lewis & Clark Law School.
  • George Kimbrell, Legal Director, Center for Food Safety, and Adjunct Professor with Lewis and Clark Law School
  • Justin Kolbeck, Co-Founder & CEO, Wild Type
  • Jovana Kovacevic, Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Food Microbiology and Co-Director, Western Regional Center to Enhance Food Safety 
  • Brittany Medlin, General Counsel, RXE Industries, 
  • Devon Morales, Liquor Licensing Technician, State of Oregon
  • Judy Parker, attorney at J.A. Parker Law Firm LLC, The Winemakers’ Lawyer
  • C. Atha Mansoory, Attorney; Partner, Falling Sky Brewing
  • Laura Warf, attorney at Davis Wright Tremaine

Panel 3: 3:00 - 4:30 PM

Innovations in Delivering Products and Engaging the Consumer

Moderated by: Maggie Finnerty, President & Executive Director, Oregon Entrepreneurs Network

Confirmed panelists include:

  • Bruce Bechtel, VP Brand Management, Keystone-Pacific | Basics Market
  • Emma Sharer, Redd Operations Manager, Ecotrust
  • Darren Marshall, CEO of Smith Teas


Reception: 4:35 - 5:15 PM

A final chance to network with colleagues and browse goods of local food entrepreneurs on display.

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