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Cannon Falls couple provides both entrees for Minneapolis School Districts' Minnesota Thursdays

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Cannon Falls couple provides both entrees for Minneapolis School Districts' Minnesota Thursdays


MINNEAPOLIS — The lunch menu on March 7 at Minneapolis Public Schools included beef and cheddar sandwiches from BAMF Meats and plant-based sloppy joes from Deeply Rooted — both produced in Cannon Falls, Minnesota. 

Bertrand Weber, director for Minneapolis Public School Culinary and Nutrition Services, said once a month for the last 10 years, the school district celebrates “Minnesota Thursdays” over the lunch hour. Everything from entrees to desserts are sourced from around a 200-mile radius outside of the Twin Cities, Weber said.

“It’s a celebration of local harvest, and we try to really showcase those items to our kids,” Weber said. “The acceptance is different based on the grade level, but they always look forward to it on a regular basis.”

On March 7, the menu consisted of a beef and cheddar sandwich from BAMF Meats in Cannon Falls with cheese from Bongards in Perham; a plant-based sloppy joe from Deeply Rooted in Cannon Falls; sweet potato JoJo from Fifth Season Cooperative in Viroqua, Wisconsin; cole slaw from Driftless Organics in Soldiers Grove, Wisconsin; and a freezer pop from JonnyPops in Elk River.

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The two entrees came from Kayla and Wade Beyer, who were on hand March 7 to enjoy the school lunch inside of Franklin Middle School in north Minneapolis.

“Today was awesome,” Kayla Beyer said after the lunch. “It really was like the pinnacle of the story we’re trying to share. It’s not all about just eating meat or all about eating a plant-based diet fully — it’s about having better choices and making deliberate choices with every meal.”

Students at Franklin Middle School in Minneapolis eat lunch on March 7, 2024.

Noah Fish / Agweek

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Wade Beyer is the owner and operator of

BAMF Stock Farms

in Cannon Falls. The calf-to-cow finishing operation runs about 200 head while also raising hogs and crops. Aside from the eight steers worth of roasts he sold to the Minneapolis schools, the farm has sold hamburger to the Pine Island School District, which is about 20 miles outside of Rochester, for about a year.

“It was different, but they did a good job,” Beyer said of eating the food he raised at a cafeteria table inside of Franklin Middle School. “I thought it tasted great.”

He said it can be a challenge for farmers to make the leap to sell to school districts and to know where to start that process.

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“If it weren’t for my wife, I probably wouldn’t have done it,” he said. “She’s already familiar with that network.”

Minnesota Grown, which the farm is a member of, is a place for schools to look if they are interested in connecting with local farms, Beyer said.

“Otherwise, just talking to your local schools, and go from there,” Beyer said.

Kayla Beyer is founder and CEO of

Deeply Rooted

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, which began around four years ago and provides shelf-stable plant-based crumble in flavors like Italian, Mexican and Korean barbecue. Consumers simply add water to the product, and she said that 4 ounces becomes 1 pound.

“I’m a food industry veteran who was working for big corporate America — big CPG brands — and wanted to start a food company that makes a bigger impact,” said Beyer, a mom of five who grew up on a dairy farm. “I worked in mass manufacturing where I saw how processed food was, and so not only did I want to put a better product on the retail shelf, I wanted to put a better product on my kids’ trays at school.”

Beyer said the way she made the farm-to-school connection with Minneapolis Public Schools was by making a simple phone call to Weber, who told her exactly what the program needed for Deeply Rooted products to be served to students.

The crumble served at Minneapolis schools went through a sodium reduction process to meet USDA standards, which she said made the product taste better in her opinion.

“I tasted my original formula now and it’s salty to me, so it’s a very good change,” she said. “We just lowered the sodium, the salt, and increased the other spices. So it wasn’t a big deal for us to do that, and we did it willingly.”

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Beyer said unlike the many plant-based companies that have popped up in the past few years, she said Deeply Rooted has nothing against meat that’s raised on a farm.

“I thought what a great opportunity to change that narrative and bring it from an agricultural perspective that I have had all these years,” she said.

Another reason Beyer was interested in selling Deeply Rooted products to the K-12 market is that it’s much larger than the retail space, she said. In retail, products like hers are targeted towards vegans and vegetarians, which she said the company’s mission doesn’t align with.

“There’s nothing wrong with being a meat company, and there’s nothing wrong with having a plant-based option,” Beyer said. “Let’s make it palatable, so it tastes good, and they actually come back for more.”

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Noah Fish

Noah Fish is a multimedia journalist who creates print, online and TV content for Agweek. He covers a wide range of farmers and agribusinesses throughout Minnesota and surrounding states. He can be reached at nfish@agweek.com

He reports out of Rochester, MN, where he lives with his wife, Kara, and their polite cat, Zena. He grew up in La Crosse, WI., and enjoys the talent from his home state like the 13-time World Champion Green Bay Packers and Grammy award-winning musicians Justin Vernon and Al Jarreau.





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Minneapolis, MN

Effort to revive Minneapolis 2040 plan moves forward in Minnesota House | Finance & Commerce

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Effort to revive Minneapolis 2040 plan moves forward in Minnesota House | Finance & Commerce


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A version of the bill that would exempt cities’ comprehensive plans from certain lawsuits under the Minnesota Environmental Review Act has made its way into the state and local government supplemental budget bill.

This policy would exempt comprehensive plans from being sued under MERA for creating dense housing and would be retroactive to March 2018. The policy was amended into the supplemental budget bill on April 18 with a unanimous voice vote by the State and Local Government Finance and Policy Committee. Advocates for the bill say they are waiting to see what the Senate does with the policy, but they are “cautiously optimistic.”

The retroactive nature of the policy would create protection for the city of Minneapolis’ 2040 Comprehensive Plan, a plan that removed single-family-only zoning and has been cited by researchers as being a reason for Minneapolis keeping its rent increases lower than the rest of the nation. However, a lawsuit against the plan, under MERA, brought its implementation to a halt.

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Rep. Sydney Jordan, the sponsor of the original bill House File 4028, said in an interview with Finance & Commerce that she was “nervous” about the bill’s status because the Legislature is “full of ups and downs.” She said, however, that she’s grateful the bill was included in the state and local government supplemental budget bill because of the issues facing Minneapolis.

“It was a bill that was necessary for my city that I represent,” Jordan said. “I felt it was important, especially because my city was trying to make sure we were permitting housing and permitting density, which is much more beneficial for the environment than promoting less-dense sorts of development.”

The bill would provide shelter for all cities in the Twin Cities metro that are planning for density under MERA, not just Minneapolis, said PeggySue Imihy Bean, the president of the American Planning Association Minnesota Chapter.

Jordan said that there is more work that needs to be done to the policy and that there are more stops for the state and local government supplemental budget bill. But she said she is confident the needs can be addressed by the end of session.

The Senate version of the bill, Senate File 4183, made it through its committee assignments, receiving a vote from the Transportation Committee, the Environment, Climate and Legacy Committee, and was laid over for possible inclusion in the omnibus bill by the State and Local Government and Veterans Committee at its March 26 Committee meeting.

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Sam Richie, a lobbyist for the Minnesota chapter of the American Planning Association, said he and others who are pushing the policy feel “cautiously optimistic” about the Senate including it in the omnibus bill. Richie said he thinks they have support from legislators, but said he is waiting for something to be in writing.

Jack Perry, a lawyer at Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP who represents the groups that brought the lawsuit against the Minneapolis 2040 Plan, said he is “confident” the bill will not pass the Senate.

When probed on what would happen to the lawsuit if the exemption is included in the final omnibus bill and signed by Gov. Tim Walz, Perry said the question was “phony” because he doesn’t think the bill will get “anywhere near Walz’s desk.”

Perry called the city of Minneapolis “radical intransigents” and compared it to the character Veruca Salt from the 1971 film “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” who insists her parents give her whatever she wants.

“I don’t think there’s the votes in the House,” he said. “I don’t think there’s votes in the Senate because people do not want to reward Veruca Salts.”

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Lawmakers consider exempting comprehensive plans from environmental lawsuits

Local officials lobbied hard against statewide zoning bill



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Minneapolis, MN

People of Color Career Fair comes to Minneapolis this week

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People of Color Career Fair comes to Minneapolis this week


People of Color Career Fair comes to Minneapolis this week – CBS Minnesota

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Founder Sharon Smith-Akinsanya says plans are in place to make the 11th edition of the People Of Color Career Fair the most successful yet.

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Minneapolis, MN

Minnesota Timberwolves memorabilia: A lookback at great Wolves merch

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Minnesota Timberwolves memorabilia: A lookback at great Wolves merch


This season ranks among the most successful in Minnesota Timberwolves’ history, despite it being a long road filled with many ups and downs. Through it all, the organization has prioritized the fans, striving to provide a great experience whether the team wins or loses.

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This marks the Minnesota Timberwolves’ 36th season. Regardless of the action on the basketball court, the front office has a critical job: ensuring a memorable fan experience. Sunday, FOX 9 took a look at how they’ve accomplished this and how their game plan has evolved over the years.

Watch the video above to see more. 



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