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December 1st, 2015

The Small Farms update summarizes announcements, information resources, opportunities and upcoming events relevant to small farms.  Please feel free to share this information in newsletters, email lists, etc. If you have announcements or resources you would like to include, please send us an email.  Subscribe here. Thank you again for your interest and support of small farms in New York.
Anu Rangarajan
Director, Cornell Small Farm Program
Featured Resource 
Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities
This guide is written for anyone seeking help from federal programs to foster innovative enterprises in agriculture and forestry in the United States. Specifically, the guide addresses program resources in community development; sustainable land management; and value-added and diversified agriculture and forestry. Thus, it can help farmers, entrepreneurs, community developers, conservationists, and many other individuals, as well as private and public organizations, both for-profit and not-for-profit. This edition can be downloaded for free, and constitutes the guide's fifth printing and third complete update, incorporating programs from the 2008 Farm Bill.

BF 102: Markets and Profits - Exploring the Feasibility of Your Farming Ideas
Have an idea for a farm enterprise but not sure if it's feasible? This online course will get you started exploring the potential markets and profitability of your ideas. It picks up where BF 101: Square One left off, so follows a natural learning progression from that course. You do not have to take BF 101 before taking BF 102; however, you will likely get more out of BF 102 if you go into it with some existing knowledge of the concepts and terminology commonly used in business planning. Please visit the NE Beginning Farmers Project for more details and to register.
Cornell Bull Test is Seeking Consignors
Planning is underway for the fourth year of the Cornell All Forage Fed Bull Test. The upcoming year's test will be 112 days, and discussion is underway to add an optional 84-day grazing component. Delivery dates are January 8 and 9 with the test beginning January 15.  Nomination form with a non-refundable $50 deposit is due by October 15. If you are interested in consigning or want additional information, contact Nancy Glazier at (585) 315-7746nig3@cornell.edu or Mike Baker at (607) 255-5923mjb228@cornell.edu. Test rules and forms can be found at the Beef Cattle Management website.
Young Farmers Conference Streamed Live
Interested in learning more about the work of farmers growing food in resilient ways?
This Thursday and Friday, 250 young and beginning farmers will gather at Stone Barns Center to participate in an array of specialized workshops taught by experts and peers, to learn from one another and to build community. To expand the reach of this farmer-training program, select workshops will be streamed live.  CLICK HERE to watch and to view the schedule of livestreamed workshops including crop rotation, a panel discussion on suppliers, and the keynote conversation with renowned author and former New York Times columnist Mark Bittman.
Grape Wine Fruit
The Northern Grapes Project Webinar Series
December 8, 12:00 noon and 8:00pm EST
"The Big Chill: Cold Acclimation and Recovery from Spring Frost in Grapes in New York" will be hosted by the Northern Grapes Project on Tuesday, Dec. 8. Cold-hardy grapes are grown in climates where spring frost often occur, and where tolerance to mid-winter cold is necessary; the reasons why grapes are more or less cold hardy are determined by both variety and weather.  In this webinar, Tim Martinson will talk about recovery from both winter cold and spring frost in Marquette and Frontenac.  Jason Londo will review some of what we know about the processes of acclimation, dormancy, and deacclimation, as well as some of the challenges we have in a future of climate variability. Please register by Friday, December 4th.
Whole Farm Planning for Resilience
December 14-16, Naples, NY
At this workshop, the farmers will improve their skills in evaluating all of the resources for their farms, and learn how to design and manage more holistically to build resilience in the face of climate change.  They will do the hard work of writing 3-part goals for their farms and their lives. These farm/family goals are based on their deepest held values and include quality of life, behaviors & systems needed to achieve their desired quality of life, and the future vision for the farm in terms of landscape and finances.  They will learn and practice improving on-farm decision-making skills that lead towards their goals including financial goals. Please contact Elizabeth Henderson (elizabethhenderson13@gmail.com) for more information.
Beginning Farmer Workshop Series 201
January 6, 13, 27, February 3, 10, & 17, 9:30am-3:00pm, 479 Rte. 66, Hudson, NY 12534
Have you been managing (whether you own your own business or work for someone) a farm business for four to seven years? If you are wondering what the best course for the business is and how to make use of available market channels, these questions (and more) will be discussed during the six-week workshop. There is no cost to participate in this workshop, but space is limited.  You may register online, or contact Tove Ford at 518-765-3518 or tff24@cornell.eduThis workshop is supported with a grant from the New York Farm Viability Institute.
Vat Pasteurizer Workshop
January 12, Sohha Savory Yogurt Plant, Astoria, NY
Cornell Dairy Foods Extension will be offering a workshop designed for small-scale dairy processors as required part of the Dairy Extension Basic Cheese Making Certificate Program. The course begins with an on-line lecture component covering the key areas related to vat pasteurization. Online portions must be completed prior to the hands-on sessions. The course will also include 1/2  day of hands-on pasteurization activities at the Sohha Savory Yogurt Plant in Astoria, NY. The course is ideally suited for p
asteurizer operators, cheese manufacturers, production, QA/QC, engineering, and maintenance personnel.  The course is instructed by industry experts and Cornell Dairy Foods Extension. Registration must be completed by Friday, December 23.
MANY MORE EVENTS at our Statewide Events Calendar.
Career, Etc. Opportunities
Quality Assurance Manager - Farm to Table Co-packers
Farm to Table Co-packers (F2T) is a fast-paced growing company based in Kingston, NY that manufactures a wide range of food items for regional farms and specialty food companies. 
F2T is seeking a Quality Assurance Manager to join its excellent team and expand its QA systems to ensure continued production of the safest and highest quality food possible. The right QA Manager will play a valuable role at F2T, raising the bar for quality and efficiency and helping the company achieve mission and profitability as it continues to grow. The main responsibilities include managing the maintenance and continued growth of the Food Safety and Quality Assurance processes for Farm to Table Co-Packers and providing on-going assurance that F2T food products and food safety practices conform to our standards and specifications. Questions and resumes should be sent to Jim Hyland. More information can be found here.
Executive Director for VINES, Binghamton, NY
VINES, a non-profit urban agriculture and community garden organization in Binghamton, NY is seeking an Executive Director. The Executive Director is the key management position of VINES and is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs and strategic plan of the organization. Other key duties include fundraising, marketing, and community outreach. Read full job description and how to apply by clicking here.
Main Street Farms Production Manager
Main Street Farms is a diversified organic vegetable farm that markets through CSA, farmers markets, and wholesale, looking to hire a Production Manager for the 2016 season. This position reports directly to the farm owners and is part of the core leadership of the farm. Overseeing production plans & implementation, this position requires high levels of organization, communication and leadership skills. Responsibilities include keeping production records, managing the spraying schedule, and keeping equipment maintained, among other things. For details and to apply, click here.
URBY Farmer in Residence
URBY is seeking a full-time Farmer in Residence for a micro-farm nested within a new, 600-unit rental complex on the North Shore of Staten Island.  This is a one-of-a-kind position for a seasoned grower who is also an educator and entrepreneur to be part of building a new model for residential urban agriculture. The farmer in residence will work with developing the resident compost program, rooftop apiary, micro-farm, landscape maintenance, and community programming. He/she will have the potential opportunity to start his/her own food production enterprise if he/she excels in managing the above systems and wants to produce at scale for the property. To apply, please fill out the online application and send it to urban.ready.farm@gmail.com along with a resume; find more information here.
PASA Sustainability Hub Programs Manager
The Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture is hiring two sustainability hub managers; one at the Southeastern Sustainability Hub office near Kimberton, PA, and another at the Western Sustainability Hub office in Gibsonia, PA. The Hub Manager will lead the development of a Sustainability Hub that will serve as the focal point for PASA's new program initiatives in Farmer Training and Development, Farm-Based Research and Farmer-to-Farmer Exchange. The successful candidate will recruit collaborators for these initiatives by building relationships with experienced and aspiring farmers. Please send cover letter and resume to jobsearch@pasafarming.org. Applications will be accepted continuously until the position is filled, but interviews will begin from among the first pool of candidates identified by
Friday, December 11, 2015.
Northern Westchester Local Food Project Internship
The Northern Westchester Local Food Project (NWLFP) is seeking a college or graduate level intern to help research the local farm capacity in Westchester and Putnam County. The internship will be focused on surveying Westchester and Putnam County farms1 to understand their capacity in addressing local food demand. Data and learning will be used to establish a benchmark for developing/assessing partnerships and programs with "hyper-local" farms aimed at driving the local food movement, enhancing food security and increasing farm to institution purchasing in the greater Bedford and Westchester community. To apply, email a resume and cover letter by December 31 explaining why you are qualified for and interested in this internship to Bedford 2020 at info@bedford2020.org.
Funding Opportunities
New Farmers Grant Fund
New York State announced $1 million for the second round of the New Farmers Grant Fund. The grants will help beginning farmers improve profitability through expanding/diversifying agricultural production, advancing innovative agricultural techniques which increase sustainable practices, and/or creating and expanding partnerships with other farms or institutions. Grants may provide a minimum of $15,000 and a maximum of $50,000 for up to 50% of total project costs. The remaining 50% must be matched by the recipient. For eligibility, guidelines, and application details, click here. Applications must be postmarked by January 22, 2016
Organic Farming Research Foundation Grants
The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) grants program is currently accepting research proposals from applicants residing in Canada, Mexico and the United States. In particular, OFRF encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students, early career researchers, veterans, and Extension personnel to consider applying. Priorities for this year's research include projects related to soil health, with emphasis on water management; creating new organic farmers and ranchers and transition of producers to organic systems including education and training; livestock production, especially breeding for organic systems, diseases and pasture management; and small grain production, especially related to creating a diverse rotational system. The deadline for proposals is February 8, 2016. Find more information and apply here.
Latest Resources
Cover Cropping for Pollinators and Beneficial Insects
Cover crops can do a lot for your farm. To learn how they can support a thriving community of pollinators and beneficial insects-which in turn can improve crop quality and yield-check out SARE's new 16-page publicationAvailable for free as either a download or in print, Cover Cropping for Pollinators and Beneficial Insects helps farmers make thoughtful changes in cover crop selection and management that support pollinators along with their other goals, such as suppressing weeds, managing nitrogen and improving soil health. The guide was written by Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation staff members, with contributions from the NRCS.
New USDA Organic Program Fact Sheets
USDA Agricultural Marketing Service's National Organic Program has posted two new two-page fact sheets. Making the Transition to Organic Production & Handling provides resources that help producers and handlers learn about transitioning their operations to organic. Technical & Financial Assistance for Organic Producers outlines technical, educational, and financial resources available to organic producers through USDA agencies and non-profit organizations. The facts sheets, as well as previous publications, can be found here.
Get Connected!
Need personal help?
Sometimes local questions are best answered by your neighborhood Cornell Cooperative Extension agent. Check out our county-by-county listing of small farm agents here. You can also get to know our Cornell Small Farms Program staff, or contact us.   Just starting to farm?  We have an extensive directory of beginning farmer service providers across the Northeast in the "Who Can Help?" section of our Northeast Beginning Farmers Project website.
SFP Small Farms Program Logo
The Small Farms Update is intended as a resource for farmers and agricultural service providers in New York and the Northeast, and is provided to you by Cornell Small Farms Program. Our mission is to foster the sustainability of diverse, thriving small farms that contribute to food security, healthy rural communities, and the environment.  The Cornell Small Farm Program is a joint effort of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Cornell Cooperative Extension.