Spend Oct. weekend developing skills

PETERSHAM, MA – From Oct. 16-18, spend a weekend here at Harvard Forest, an ecological preserve managed by Harvard University at one of the oldest managed forests in the country with women in the meat industry, learning new skills at Women in Meat Northeast.

Female business leaders and entrepreneurs will shall their knowledge in a series  of classes and dinners designed as a venue for learning and practicing skill sets, says  consultant Edith Murnane, who served as Boston’s first director of food initiatives under Mayor Thomas Menino from 2010 to 2014.

The weekend program came about, she explains, as the result of growing interest in New England in healthy eating that resulted in a drop off in meat consumption. “It’s a venue for learning and practicing skill sets.” It grew from interest in buying locally, coupled with a lack of butchering experience. The classes will match cuts of meat with cooking methods. “It is meant to be fun and engaging, a venue for learning and practicing skill sets.  There’s been little experience in cutting real meat. We need greater infra-structure with a butchering component.”

Kari Underly of Range Meat Academy will oversee the classes and dinners as attendees to match cuts of beef with cooking methods, explore case studies, learn about loans, grants and Kickstarters and more. “She wants to do a butchering school,” Murnane says, adding that many women have been saying ‘put a saw in my hands’ because they want more butchering skills.”

The event offers various options for participation from one to three days at various price structures. The conference includes all meals plus the overnight stay. Massachusetts and New England, Murnane points out, “is at the forefront of local food” and has been since the 1970s. “This is the next stage,” she declares. “Grass fed beef offers healthier profiles.”In 2017, watch as we re-launch the New England Meat Conference which was held in 2013 and ’14. We didm not have the bandwidth to keep it going and now, I’ve been hired to do a steering committee in late winter or spring next year.”

The state and the rest of New England have been at the forefront of the local food movement since the 1970s, she adds, and now is moving toward the next stage. For details about the weekend program, contact edith.murnane@gmail.com.




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