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In the News: World Food Day, 5 Easy Ways to find Happiness at Work, and Getting Paid to Eat!

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  • The International Federation for Home Economics (IFHE) presents World Food Day on October 16, 2018.  They have published a press release here
  • Membership in FCS Professionals can help you with item numbers 2, 3 & 5 on the 5 Easy Ways to Find Happiness at Work list!
  • To some members this may be a dream job!  Professional food taster at luxury resorts?  Click here

Blog Feature: Marie Winker Shares her Experience with VEAP

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Thank you to Marie Winker for sharing her experiences with VEAP (Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People)

The VEAP Service Center in Bloomington is a service hub combining services from Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health Department as well as the VEAP Food Program under one roof for low income residents of Bloomington, Richfield, Edina and South Minneapolis.

The VEAP Food Program includes the largest food pantry in Minnesota where clients arriving by bus are able to arrange to get transportation home with their food.

The NEAT (Nutrition Education and Teaching) program supplements the Food Program by repurposing fresh food (by making banana bread to distribute in the pantry), provide samples (to introduce and teach clients how to use some less common food items) and conduct cooking classes.

I first heard of VEAP when a professional group I belong to was invited to a meeting of another group in winter 2014.  VEAP had recently moved into the building and the commercial/teaching kitchen was still under construction.  I had the distinct impression that I could see myself volunteering there.  Two years later, a group from my church worked in the warehouse and after that I finally pursued becoming a volunteer.

Volunteers are needed in all aspects of VEAP programs.  Thus far, I have volunteered in several ways. The first was with the church group in the warehouse where we sorted produce before putting in the pantry the foods that were still fresh enough to safely use or bagged potatoes, apples, carrots, onions or other donated produce that came in enormous boxes.

The program I work primarily in has been the NEAT cooking classes as a classroom assistant.  Extension provides the educator, there is a volunteer culinary instructor who demonstrates the techniques for each class session and then up to three classroom assistants who help the class run smoothly by doing tasks in the background, prepare the materials that the students take home (including a bag of groceries to prepare the featured recipe of that class session), help the students as needed while they prepare the recipe and help with the clean up.

Other programs include Summer Youth Food Program, Back to School Program, Birthday Bag Program, Holiday Toy Program and Transportation Program.  Volunteers are needed for a variety of tasks in each of these programs including verifying the amount on donated gift cards for the Holiday Toy Program.

I have greatly enjoyed working with the NEAT program at VEAP and would encourage anyone looking for a place to volunteer to explore the possibilities that VEAP has.  They have opportunities for all ages including jobs both active and seated.  Further information about VEAP can be found at and the volunteer director is Shari DeBlieck(

Global Hand Washing Day October 15 Activities

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Global Hand Washing Day, October 15, is a good day to start a new habit of handwashing in your school or community. Here are 5 opportunities to get you started:

  1. Attend ACI’s 2016 Make Handwashing a Habit Anytime Webinar
  2. Download and share our Global Handwashing Day Activity Sheet
  3. Join CDC experts for a YouTube Live handwashing presentation on October 14 at 10:30 AM ET
  4. Complete a handwashing campaign or project and apply for the Healthy Schools, Healthy People, It’s a SNAP National Award
  5. Share this information with your colleagues so that they can also make handwashing a habit


More information on “Make Handwashing a Habit Anytime Webinar”

Cost: Free

Duration: 30 minutes

Speakers include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Global Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing, and the 2016 Healthy Schools, Healthy People National Award Recipient. In about 30 minutes, these experts will help make handwashing a habit by sharing educational resources and information.

In addition, cleaning products gift baskets will be given away to 5 lucky webinar registrants in a drawing held December 1!

Note: This is not a live webinar.  It has already been recorded and can be viewed at your leisure. Make sure you register before December 1 to be eligible for the prize drawing.

To view the webinar register here

Continuing Education: Winning Consumers in a Non-GMO Marketplace Webinar

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FCS Professionals members are invited to participate in a complimentary webinar sponsored by Ingredion on Monday, October 17 at 1:00 p.m.  The title of the program is “Winning Consumers in a Non-GMO Marketplace”.

From the website:  Now more than ever, consumers are paying attention to “non-GMO” claims on food and beverage labels. Be better prepared to make non-GMO supply decisions and gain the latest consumer insights to help you market your non-GMO products effectively. Join the experts for this content-rich webinar comprised of two short segments:


  • What consumers know, think and how they make decisions relative to GMOs today
  • Expert insights into non-GMO sourcing and supply chain implications

Webinar is free but you must register in advance here

October Feature: Travels and Tourism

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Each month the blog will feature a specific theme.  October’s theme is “Travels and Tourism” and will have articles throughout related to it.  Our first feature article is from Deb Zwiefelhofer discussing  a recent day trip to the St. Cloud area. 

Day-Tripping to St. Cloud Minnesota

Recently a couple of college friends and I met up for a girls’ day in St. Cloud. I grew up in that area and was not expecting much in the way of unique and different!  I am glad to say the three stops we made on a Friday in September scored five stars with all of us. If you are looking for a nice ‘day trip’ I highly recommend the route we took and the stops we made.

Our first stop was The Grand Depot right off I-94 and Highway 23. This is a ‘foodies’ heaven for shopping and tasting. The Depot is a several times moved and renovated 1912 train depot – beautiful building as most old train depots seem to be! Currently there are two shops, Accentric and Corks and Casks, with another store planned to open soon. Our little group spent almost 2 hours oohing and ahhing over the various kitchen items, fun foods (and samples) and awesome gift ideas. This is the place to go if you are looking for a clever gift or that elusive kitchen tool!

After all the samples at Accentric in The Grand Depot, we probably didn’t need to eat lunch but it was noon and therefore lunch time! So, lunch was at Jules’ Bistro which is a quaint little restaurant and art shop located in the downtown area. They feature (and sell) work of local artists as part of their décor so there is more shopping here too. The “half” salad that I had with my homemade creamy chicken dumpling soup was seriously generous in size and wonderful. The salad and soup choices my friends made were satisfying to them too! We all shared two desserts – a crème brule and a chocolate cake – both earning two thumbs up. The menu offers a variety of sandwiches, wraps, pizza, salads, soups and desserts. They also serve breakfast and offer wine and beer. Someone of any age would surely find something on the menu at Jules’. Foods are sourced locally and homemade daily. The portions were hardy and the flavors were amazing. Prices were reasonable and in line with other eating establishments. It has been rated 4 out of 5 stars but our little group of three gave it 5 out of 5.

Our third, and final, destination for the day was the Munsinger and Clemens Gardens. These gardens sit along the Mississippi river and offer different kinds of beauty as they goes through the growing season. The roses are something to behold when in full bloom – we were a bit late for that but we did get to see all the fall flowers in their glory! You can stroll through the gardens (and gift shop) as leisurely or as quickly as you like. We probably spent another two hours wandering the different areas playing ‘name that plant’. Fortunately for us they had arborists and garden workers wondering around to identify the many plants that we could not name.

You can find out more about each of these destinations on their respective websites, which are linked in this article. St. Cloud is only about 45-60 minutes from the Minneapolis/ St. Paul metro area depending on your starting point.

Summit Brewery Tour Invite

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FCS Professionals are invited to join the Institute of Packaging Professionals (IOPP) at the Summit Brewery for a tour and dinner on Thursday, October 13 from 2:30-6:00 p.m.   FCS Professionals past president Sarah Wangler is organizing this adventure!

Come learn what’s “Behind the Brew” as we tour the Summit Brewing Company and help them celebrate their 30th Anniversary.  Stroll through Summit’s history. Learn why their beers have so much character. Hear about Summit’s role in creating a sustainable planet and how they support our community. We’ll tour the packaging and bottling lines, the original and new cellars, the cooler, the racking/kegging line and we’ll look into the brewing area and the canning line.  The Director of Production will be available to answer any questions.

2:30-pm:   Check in
3:00 pm:   Presentation & Tour
5-6:00 pm: Dinner

MENU – Catered by Divine Swine

Roasted Shredded Pork Sandwiches
Roasted Shredded Beef Sandwiches
Au Gratin Potatoes
Pork Baked Beans
Pineapple Cole Slaw
Potato Chips
Raspberry Bars
Lemon Bars

$40 Member
$20 Students
$50 Guest (New Guests may use “BrewVIP” code at check out to get $20 off this meeting; so $30 total cost to register any new guest not currently on our email list.)

Register by noon, Monday, October 10.

Required Attire: Closed Toe shoes are required for the tour. (No sandals or flip-flops are allowed.)

Summit encourages tour attendees to bring a monetary donation or boxed or canned food for Second Harvest Heartland.


To register click HERE

In the News: Catching FCS Professionals Up on All the Latest!

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There are several interesting articles to share with FCS Professionals!


Breast Cancer:  Teen Fruit Consumption Linked to Lower Risk.  Access the article here

The 2016 Most Innovative Women in Food and Drink.  Access the article here

Can Fake Junk Food Truly Satisfy?   Access the article here

Food Tasting Too Healthy? Just Add Scent.  Access the article here

Minnesota Food Nonprofits: A Tribute to a few Hardworking Nonprofits.  Access the article here

Take a Two Week Vegetarian Challenge.  Access the article here

Cultured Coffee…the Beginning of a New Fermented Foods Revolution? Access the article here