Our Good Work                                                                 Spring 2014 
While farmers are finally busy with spring planting, we're spreading the seeds of partnership to put more farmers on the land and more land in farming. 

This installment of Our Good Work highlights exciting progress in CT and NH - including our new field agent in CT and new project in southern NH (Monadnock). Also check out our updated video.
 
The farmland access opportunities and challenges facing our region's farmers and food systems have never been more important.  The number and acreage of farms are both increasing in New England, which bucks the national trend revealed in the new Census of Agriculture (2012). And beginning farmers are a big part of this positive development. See Kathy Ruhf's article in the 2014 Farm Credit East report on Northeast Agriculture. 
 
Our entire staff is busy with workshops, training, and local partnerships that address farmland access. Since the first of the year we've provided help in response to over 100 inquiries, and reached hundreds through over a dozen workshops and presentations. 
  
If you value farmers, working farms and a resilient food systems like I do, we need you to support this work. Only together can we gain more ground for farmers and the healthy, working landscape that we all love.

 

Thanks for your support!

Jim Habana Hafner
Deputy Director




AmandaNew Field Agent Hired to Boost Work in Connecticut
Amanda LeMaire, Connecticut Field Agent

We're thrilled to announce that Amanda LeMaire of Thomaston, CT will join the team as our new Connecticut Field Agent. Amanda is a second generation owner of her family's farm and has been involved in farming her entire life. She'll work statewide on farmland access, tenure and transfer issues. We'll increase our direct services to farmers and landowners, and continue to build the network of support services by working closely with groups on the ground. Welcome Amanda!    

 

Read more about Amanda

 

findingCollaboration Around Land Access in Connecticut Gains Momentum
Photo by John Woike, Hartford Courant

We've been active in CT for some time. But energy to improve land access has gained new momentum due to an ad hoc Farmland Access Working Group that we've been participating in for the past year. Group members include American Farmland Trust, CT Farmland Trust, CT Farm Bureau, UConn Extension, CT NOFA, and the New CT Farmer Alliance. 

 

In addition to improving the state's farm link program, the group is focused on how to bring more land access education and services to farmers and landowners. Together we organized a statewide Farmland Affordability Forum (Oct.) attended by over 50 key people- from farmers and lenders to agencies and policymakers. Strategies for making farmland accessible and affordable were highlighted. We're also reaching new farmers by presenting at events like CT-NOFA's Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference and February's Build Your Network, Grow Our Future meeting.

  

MonadnockNew Project to Make More Conserved Farmland Accessible
Melissa and client
NH Field Agent, Melissa Blindow, working with a beginning farmer.

A regional coalition to support sustainable food systems is partnering with LFG to work on significant local farmland access projects over the next year. The project proposes to improve access to farmland and provide more secure land tenure for farm seekers in Cheshire County, describes the Monadnock Farm and Community Coalition (MFCC).

 

Land For Good will join with the Cheshire County Conservation District, The Monadnock Conservancy, and UNH Cooperative Extension to learn more about the needs and concerns of owners of conserved lands, followed by educational workshops, 1:1 technical assistance and outreach to farmers and these landowners. 

 

Watch for more details on this local project.


networksAcquiring Farmland Workshop part of
May 19 
Monadnock Farm Summit

The Monadnock Farm and Community Coalition will host an upcoming Farm Summit on May 19, 2014 from 5:30 - 8:00pm at Heberton Hall, 60 Winter Street, next to the Keene Public Library. Networking dinner will be served. Workshops will focus on top challenges: 

  • Where Do I Start? Acquiring Land to Farm
    presented by Land For Good.
  • Access to Funding & Financing
    presented by NH Farm Service Agency.
  • Improving Farm Production and Equipment
    presented by NH Small & Beginning Farmers; UNH Cooperative Extension.
  • NRCS Technical and Financial Programs to Improve Production
  • Successfully Selling Wholesale - One buyer shares why he orders from Monadnock Menus  

For more information, visit the MFCC website

 

In This Issue
Have you seen?
How we help farmers gain ground
Watch out video!
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Huge turnout on the NH Seacoast!

 

Beginning farmers connected with landowners and a wide range of advisors at the March 28 Seacoast Farmland Access Info Night and Farmer Mixer held at the new Smuttynose Brewery in Hampton, NH. Over 100 farmers and farm supporters turned out to explore strategies and challenges facing beginning farmers in NH. Read more

Proud to Partner

"With your assistance we have been able to clarify a new relationship with the farmers that can better serve both the farmers and SCLT in the coming years. Farmers, staff, and I appreciate your careful listening, clear thinking and creative suggestions."

Southside Community Land Trust

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Land For Good is a tax-exempt, not-for-profit organization supported by grants, fees, and your generous donations.  
 
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Land For Good | 603.357.1600 | info@landforgood.org| http://www.landforgood.org
PO Box 625
39 Central Square, Suite 306
Keene NH 03431

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