Making It In Michigan Conference and Marketplace Trade Show

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Lansing Center
333 E Michigan Ave, Lansing, MI 48933


“Climbing the Ladder to Entrepreneurial Success”

Have an idea for a food business? You can interact with the MSU Product Center Team and many thriving Michigan food businesses to learn how to develop your idea into a viable business.

Want to learn more about making your business more efficient and profitable? The conference component features morning educational sessions that will concentrate on different business strategies that cover the following:

- Consumer Trends in Beverages
- The Art of Branding Through Your Label
- Working with a Co-packer: When to Make That Important Decision
- Winning @ Retail - How to Market 'Local'
- How to Source Locally Raised Meats & Cheeses

- Common Hurdles as a New Entrepreneur
- Researching the Best Packaging Solution: Where Do I Begin?
- Selling Your Product to Institutions
- Working with a Retailer - Who, What, Where and How?
- Working with a Distributor - When, Why and How?
- Taking the Mystery Out of Lot Coding, UPC's, & Shelf Life
- Food Label Claims: Clearing Up the Confusion

This year’s keynote will consist of a lunch time panel discussion of three MSU Product Center clients who are very successful Michigan entrepreneurs. Scott Owens, Co-Founder, President and Master Mixologist of the brand “Scotty O’Hotty,” has turned his family farm to table home recipes into a thriving nationwide business. Next, Andrew Chmielewski, Founder of Dave’s Sweet Tooth Toffee and Co-Founder of the Mitten Crate, has the goal of bringing people together through food and expose as many as possible to the amazing products made in the “Mitten State.” Finally, Jill Bommarito, Founder and President of Ethel’s Baking Company, has created a premier baking company producing hand-crafted gluten free dessert bars and cookies. All three look forward to sharing their stories and steps to climbing the ladder of entrepreneurial success, from their kitchen to the now many specialty retailers across Michigan, the United States and even worldwide!


Choose your vendor booth location for the Marketplace Trade Show! Please be sure to review the Marketplace Trade Show Booth Selection document as you will be able to choose your vendor booth location during the registration process. You will have the option to provide your top three choices and locations will be confirmed in the order in which paid registrations are received. If you do not select a booth location, one will be chosen for you.

SPREAD THE WORD! This event is open to the public and has FREE general admission.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

Please contact the Product Center with any general questions you may have regarding this event at 517-432-4608 or If you have registration or payment concerns please contact Trina Bierschbach at 517-353-7185 or