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February 2nd, 2017

The Small Farms update summarizes announcements, resources, opportunities and upcoming events relevant to small farms.  Please feel free to share this information in newsletters, email lists, etc. If you would like to submit an item for an upcoming issue, please visit our new online form. Subscribe here. Thank you again for your interest and support of small farms in New York.   

Anu Rangarajan, Director, Cornell Small Farm Program
Small Farms Program Highlights
vegetable tomato
Seeking Submissions for Column: "Lessons from the Land"
The Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming and the Cornell Small Farms Program have teamed up to create a new column called Lessons from the Land. We want to hear stories from growers of all types and sizes on real topics that matter! Submissions of 400-800 words may be submitted online. For more information, visit groundswellcenter.org/lessons-from-the-land.

Have a Fruitful Harvest!
Registration for Winter/Spring Small Farms Online Courses is now open, including BF 121: Veggie Farming 2 - From Care to HarvestJoin experienced educators to create an in-season fertility and pest/weed control plan, and focus on making good production decisions for the upcoming season. Sign up a month in advance to get a $25 discount on each course, plus a $50 total discount off registration for 3 or more courses. Learn more
Nationwide Study of Intermediated Marketing Channels for Regional Food Systems

Syracuse University is currently looking for farmers to take part in a national study (through a survey) being led by Syracuse University, The Pennsylvania State University, New York University, and the National Center for Appropriate Technology. The study seeks to examine seeks to examine local and regional agricultural production and intermediated markets, and will examine the opportunities and risks of four main marketing opportunities for farmers-direct-to-consumer, direct-to-institution, direct-to-retail, and selling to intermediaries (such as distributors or food hubs), who in turn sell the products as local food. We are interested in all farmers' perceptions of these markets, whether currently selling to these markets or not. A national outreach and technical assistance program will be developed based on the results of this research. The online survey for farmers should take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete and can be found online hereIf you would prefer to complete a paper version of the survey or have any questions, contact Lydia Oberholtzer, Penn State, at 301-891-0470 or lso3@psu.edu.
Small Farms Quarterly Accepting Articles for Spring 2017 Edition

Do you like to write about farming in the Northeast region?  The Small Farms Quarterly Magazine is seeking submissions for it's Spring, 2017 issue. Articles can cover anything from livestock and field crops to business management and marketing. The deadline to submit articles to the Spring issue of the Small Farms Quarterly, a Small Farms Program publication, is February 17, 2017. Before submitting an article, read over the writer's guidelines here. Our submission template can be found online. Questions?  Contact Managing Editor Steve Gabriel at sfg53@cornell.edu. Previous issues of the Quarterly can be found here.

National Young Farmer Survey

Take the National Young Farmer Survey and let Congress know that #FarmersCount! The survey is conducted every five years by the National Young Farmers Coalition (NYFC) in order to understand and elevate the issues that matter most to young farmers and aspiring farmers. Take the survey today and share it broadly. It is crucial that the survey results represent all young farmers and aspiring farmers, no matter where they live or what they grow. Survey answers are completely confidential. Take the survey at youngfarmers.org/survey.
Understanding GAPs and FSMA Certification

February 7, 8:30am-5:30pm and February 8, 
9am-4:30pm. Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County, 203 N Hamilton St, Watertown, NY 13601.

Over this two-day event, you will be taught the foundation for Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) and co-management information, FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirements and details on developing a farm food safety plan by Betsy Bihn, Director, Produce Safety Alliance and Program Coordinator for the National Good Agricultural Practices Program. The fee to attend is $50 for both days; free for active duty soldiers and veterans. Cost of $35 for anyone who wants to receive certification. Learn more and register at reg.cce.cornell.edu/GAPs_222.
Season Extension Online Conference
February 8 and 9, 9:30am-4:30pm. Online.
Join expert Andrew Mefferd and your fellow growers for the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network's (ACORN)'s first full online conference on mastering season extension practices! You'll be able to take in a range of topics: selecting structures for protected culture, fertigation, pest and disease management, managing fruit crops, grafting and more - all from the comfort of your own home! There will be plenty of opportunity to ask questions and discuss techniques with your fellow growers. Everyone welcome! Click here to register now, or visit the Facebook event page for more information.

Growing Success for Direct Market Farmers

February 10, 9am-4pm
. 840 Upper Front St, Binghamton, NY 13905.

Meeting the needs and values of your customers is fundamental to creating a healthy long-term relationship. How to actively seek buyers is just the start. Who is your customer and why do they buy? Maintaining the relationship requires attention to details from varieties, quality, pricing, communication, sequential planting, quality control, merchandising, trends, and more. Learn how to serve the direct market ­and make your farm a highly desired source of fresh produce. Participating farmers will receive a free copy of the Direct Market Success manual - a reference guide for farms selling in direct market venues such as farmers markets, CSAs and farm stands. The cost to attend this workshop is $20/farm or family to cover the cost of materials and food. Pre-registration is requested. Click here to register for the workshop.
ENYCHP Organic Grower Farmer-to Farmer Conference
February 15, 9am-4:30pm. Poughkeepsie Farm Project, 51 Vassar Farm Lane, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601.
Join the CCE Eastern New York Commercial Horticulture Program for a one day winter school specific to Organic production! Hear from panels of experienced growers and industry experts about the following topics:

> Precision cultivation

> Cover crops and tarps for weed suppression

> Biocontrols: how do they actually work? 

> Scaling up and paring down: should you grow fewer crops, better?

> What do I need to know about worker protection standards?

Lunch will be provided, but you must pre-register to guarantee lunch. Cost per person is $25 enrolled or $30 non-enrolled. Register by clicking here or calling Abby at 518.746.2553.

MANY MORE EVENTS at our Statewide Events Calendar.

Career, Etc. Opportunities
Apply to Become a FoodCorps Service Member
FoodCorps recruits talented leaders for a year of paid public service building healthy school food environments in limited-resource communities. Together with communities, FoodCorps serves to connect kids in 17 states and Washington, D.C., to healthy food in school through food and nutrition education, hands-on gardening and cooking activities, and putting local food on cafeteria trays. Applications for joining the FoodCorps cohort for the 2017-2018 school year are due by March 15, 2017. Click here to apply.
Sustainable Farming Internships and Apprenticeships

Now that the holidays are past, it's a good time for sustainable-agriculture students to plan their summers. ATTRA has a long-running internship and apprenticeship database that is free for students to use. Browse the directory of on-the-job learning opportunities in sustainable and organic agriculture at attra.ncat.org/internships

Educator - Groundswell Center for Local Food and Farming
Groundswell is looking for enthusiastic educators to teach and/or facilitate courses and workshops in collaboration with us. Are you passionate about a topic related to food and farming? Are you excited to share a skill you have? We want to know about it! Our most successful courses are interactive and experience-based and led by experienced and passionate individuals who what to share their knowledge. We welcome all ideas, from hands-on topics like Scything or Orchard Management to business-related ones like Branding or Farm Labor. If your program is selected, you will be hired as a Groundswell contractor and compensated for your time to develop course curriculum and lead the class. For more information about this position and others, visit groundswellcenter.org/employment. Application deadline is rolling.

Veteran On the Job Training (OJT) for Farm Production Specialist

This is a one year program approved by the Division of Veterans' Affairs to provide formal on-the-job training for military service members transitioning to agricultural careers. This program allows veterans to leverage their GI Bill funds as they gain the skills needed for agricultural employment. Kreher's Poultry Farms will pay participating veterans at a rate equal to that of any other trainee, while the Division of Veterans' Affairs pay the veterans a portion of their military housing allowance. If both parties agree the training has been beneficial at completion of the training period, a full-time position will be available. The farms where you will work are in Brockport and Clarence, NY. You must have the ability to get to both locations on any given day. After completion of training, trainee has opportunity for advancement as well as opportunities in positions in other departments based upon interest and skills. Click here for more information and to apply.
Farm Internship Opportunity - Sky High Farm
Sky High Farm is a mission-driven non-profit organization that is committed to addressing food security and nutrition by improving access to nutritious food for New Yorkers living in underserved communities. The farm sustainably grows organic fruits and vegetables and raises livestock exclusively for the purpose of donation. We are a small, diverse operation entering our fifth season. There are four internships available for the upcoming season: 2 Internship Positions from April 17, 2017 thru October 13, 2017, and 2 Internship Positions from May 29, 2017 thru August 18, 2017. We work 40 hours per week, Monday through Friday beginning at 7:30AM.  Weekends are free, but due to livestock and greenhouse responsibilities, interns should be prepared to work occasional weekends on a rotating schedule and take the following Monday and Tuesday off. The workload will be varied, consisting of livestock, vegetable production, and administrative tasks. To apply for this position, please send 1) letter of interest, 2) resume, and 3) three references with contact info who can comment on your professional experience by February 24th, 2017.  In your letter please include any relevant experience, why you are interested in Sky High, our mission and this farming opportunity, and your availability to begin work. Application materials should be sent via email to sam@skyhighfarm.org

Farming & Business Specialist - Groundswell Center for Local Food and Farming
This is a full-time salaried position, averaging 35 hours/week. Due to the seasonal nature of responsibilities, this position is 40 hours/week April - October and closer to 30 hours/week November - March. The position is grant funded until December 2017, with the possibility to renew based on funding and performance. This position primary supports the farming and business aspirations of a diverse group of farmers enrolled in the Incubator Farm Program and coordinates Groundswell's Farm Business courses. For more information about this position and others, visit groundswellcenter.org/employmentApplication deadline is rolling.

Wild Hill Farm - Beginning Farm Apprentice
WILD HILL FARM seeks a Beginning Farm Apprentice (full-time paid worker) for April - Nov 2017. Ideal candidate has serious interest in learning how to make a living managing a small organic veggie operation. No experience necessary. We are a 150-member vegetable CSA farm in Bloomfield, NY. Full description at wildhillfarm.com/apprenticeshipsContact Farmer Erin for questions: erin@wildhillfarm.com

Garden Center and Single Family House for Sale
Profitable garden center and single family home on nearly 2 acres located on Route 117 in Stow, MA. The business has high visibility and steady traffic flow in an affluent Boston suburb. It includes a 3500 sq ft building featuring a 1500 sq ft post and beam retail greenhouse and 5 poly covered greenhouses (approx 7000 sq ft) for growing and selling. The 3 bedroom ranch style home with 2100 sq ft of living area is attached to the garden center by a large 3 season screened porch. It can be used as a residence or leased to provide additional income. Currently run as a successful seasonal business, but with ample potential for expansion. Owner retiring after 35 years. Please contact Paul Cirignano RE/MAX Leading Edge at (781) 570-9007.

Stonegate Farm, Balmville, NY - Flower Farm Apprentice
We have an opportunity for an aspiring flower farmer with some experience in floriculture to manage our expanding organic cut flower operation at Stonegate Farm. Income opportunities from flower sales, arranging for weddings and events connected to the farm, CSA sales. Stonegate is an 1850s Carpenter Gothic estate farm in New York's Hudson River Valley, one hour North of New York City. We run a CSA and market farm that includes heirloom vegetables, historic orchard fruit, cut flowers, eggs and honey. The farm is small, sustainable, bio-intensive and integrated into a non-farm district; a model of local, small-scale community farming that is central to the owner's philosophy. Position begins in March 2017, interviews at the farm or via Skype from mid-January on. Email for details: info@stonegatefarmNY.org. Visit us on Instagram @StonegatefarmNY.

LEAD New York Program - Empire State Food and Agricultural Leadership Institute
LEAD New York Program Accepting Applications for Class 17: The Empire State Food and Agricultural Leadership Institute. LEADNY is a leadership development program for adult professionals in the food, agricultural and natural resource industries of the Northeast. Individuals who successfully complete year one will receive a certificate of completion for the "Leadership Fundamentals" portion of our program. Individuals successfully completing the second year of the program will have the distinction of being known as "LEAD Fellows".  For more information please contact Larry Van De Valk, Executive Director, LEAD NY Program, 275B Warren Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (607) 255 - 7907, ljv4@cornell.edu. Applications are due by March 1, 2017 and are available on our website.

Funding Opportunities
Local Food Promotion Program
The Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP) offers matching funds for planning and implementation grants. These grants support the development and expansion of local and regional food business enterprises to increase domestic consumption of, and access to, locally and regionally produced agricultural products, and to develop new market opportunities for farm and ranch operations serving local markets. Eligible applicants support local and regional food business enterprises that process, distribute, aggregate, or store locally or regionally produced food products. Grant applications are due by March 27, 2017.

Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund

The Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund will begin accepting applications February 1 for the 2017 award cycle. 
Beginning at 8 a.m. PST on February 1, the 2017 Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund application will be posted to the FVC website at www.farmvetco.org. The deadline to submit an application is Monday, March 20. The fellowship awards, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 per person, are paid to third-party vendors of the awardees choosing for purchases that make the largest impact on the farmer veteran's operation, such as livestock, fencing, tractor implements, barns and greenhouses. For more information about eligibility and the application process, please click here.

Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program
The Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program provides about $1 million in matching funds to state agencies and state colleges and universities. Funds will support research projects to address challenges and opportunities in marketing, transporting, and distributing U.S. agricultural products domestically and internationally. Proposals must have a strong marketing focus, must involve research, and the primary beneficiaries must be agricultural producers and agribusinesses. Applications are due March 27, 2017.
Latest Resources
New Comparison tool on Animal Welfare Certification Programs for Farmers
The ASPCA has partnered with Vermont Law School's Center for Agriculture and Food Systems to create the Farm Animal Welfare Certification Guide, now available as a free download online. The guide lays out the operational and business considerations of becoming welfare-certified and offers an in-depth look at the standards and requirements of three meaningful animal welfare certifications in the United States - Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Humane® and Global Animal Partnership. They will be hosting a webinar on welfare certification with the Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) on February 2nd.

Practical Farmers of Iowa Launches Small Grain Video Series
Practical Farmers of Iowa has posted "Small Grains: A Revival," the first episode in its new video series, Rotationally Raised. In the video, farmers talk about growing small grains, from seed selection and planting to harvest and marketing. The weekly series explains how raising corn, soybeans, small grains, and hay rotationally-and feeding those crops to livestock-helps farmers reduce inputs and improve stewardship.

You and Your Forest Newsletter
Did you know New York State is over 60% forested and that 85% of these forests are owned by private landowners? Most forest landowners are not aware of the range of options available in planning for their woodland's sustainable future. You and Your Forest is a free informational letter series that can help you begin the process of good forest stewardship without leaving the comfort of your home. The letter series does not require any previous knowledge of forests or forestry.  If you sign up, you will receive seven, 8-page, self-study installments beginning in late winter and sent every two weeks through spring, by either email or regular mail. Issue topics include forest ecology, protecting your forest assets, agroforestry practices (mushrooms, ginseng...), enhancing your forest for wildlife, forest management, forest invasive species and much more. So, whether you own 5 acres or 500, now is the time learn how to be a good forest steward. For more information contact Cornell Cooperative Extension of Columbia & Greene Counties at 518-622-9820. Deadline to register is February 23, 2017.

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. We envision a future where diverse and vibrant urban and rural farms build human capacity, revitalize communities, supply regional food systems, and foster ecological resilience in a changing world. The Cornell Small Farm Program is a joint effort of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Cornell Cooperative Extension.

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