South Dakota farmers grow new take on farm-to-table trends

While South Dakota’s No. 1 industry of agriculture is best known for its rolling fields of small grains, rows of corn and herds of cattle, there are plenty of producers that offer a variety of ready-to-use ingredients.

Some, like Cherry Rock Farms, a fourth-generation vegetable farm in Brandon, South Dakota, have been around since the early 1900s. Others, such as Dakota Mushrooms and Microgreens, started within the past few years as garage and living room projects that grew into full-blown business models. But for all producers, selling at regional farmers markets and wholesale to local restaurants gives way to more personal, one-on-one relationships that benefit business in the long run.

Daniel Rislov, the owner of Dakota Mushrooms and Microgreens, sells through all three avenues, but working with local restaurants keeps him in business year-round. “I like to keep it simple, to be honest.” Riesler said of working with chefs in the area to sell his fresh mushrooms.

While he has aspirations to sell a dried mushroom seasoning online, he said he prefers the personal relationships when it comes to selling fresh product.

“People can see and taste the freshness,” he said. “The money generated for local producers comes back tenfold.”

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