FRIDAY, MARCH 9TH
PRE-CONFERENCE: FARM LAW 101
PRE-CONFERENCE: FARM LAW 101
Developing a strong, legally resilient farm business is easier than you think. Farm Commons’ collaborative, easily accessible approach to learning farm law is perfect for innovative direct-to-consumer and sustainable farmers. Sustainable Farm Law 101 isn't a set of boring lectures filled with legal lingo. This workshop is led by a legal professional familiar with farming, and a few farmer co-facilitators, guaranteeing a combination of on-the-ground experience, user-friendly legal education, and lots of input from participants. This is an engaging, energetic, useful workshop that will inspire participants to take concrete action to build stronger, more resilient farms! LEARN MORE HERE
SATURDAY, MARCH 10TH
5th ANNAUL FARMERS GUILD-RAISING
5th ANNAUL FARMERS GUILD-RAISING
Food Safety: Does FSMA Apply to Your Farm?
Farms subject to FSMA will need to start complying in January 2018 to new Food Safety Modernization Act rules. Is your farm one of them? In this workshop we'll explore what makes a farm fully exempt from the law, partially exempt, or fully subject. Learn how to prepare for future inspections and get an overview of Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs).
Kali Feiereisel, MPH
Food Safety Specialist, CAFF
Community Support Agriculture Network
Michelle Wyler, CAFF
Climate Smart Agriculture: An Idea Whose Time Has Come
CAFF, The Farmers Guild and the CalCAN coalition have been on the vanguard of what has come to be called “climate smart agriculture” and “carbon farming.” Now, the state of California has the country’s first funded programs to make grants to farmers for transitioning to practices with climate benefits. In this workshop, hear the story of how these programs came to be and where they are headed. Hear from farmers who have received grants, and find out how you can get engaged to support their improvement and continued funding.
Renata Brillinger, CalCAN
Evolution of Organic: Film Screening
EVOLUTION of ORGANIC tells the story of organic agriculture, told by those who built the movement. A motley crew of back-to-the-landers, spiritual seekers and farmers’ sons and daughters reject chemical farming and set out to explore organic alternatives. It’s a heartfelt journey of change – from a small band of rebels to a cultural transformation in the way we grow and eat food. By now organic has gone mainstream, split into an industry oriented toward bringing organic to all people and a movement that has realized a vision of sustainable agriculture. It’s the most popular and successful outgrowth of the environmental impulse of the last fifty years.
Getting Past the Handshake:
A Roundtable Discussion About Leasing
Are you in the process of negotiating a lease? Are you running into road blocks coming to a mutual agreement? Do you have questions about what lease provisions would be most appropriate for your situation? Join California FarmLink and farmer(s) (insert farm name here--TBD) and contribute to a round table discussion about lease negotiations, lease provisions, what worked, what to avoid and how to work through it.
Liya Schwartzman, California FarmLink
Want to start, expand, or pass on a farm? (That's about everyone, right?) Learn about the cooperative business model and how it applies to financing, labor, distribution, succession, and other vital aspects of farming.
Mai Nguyen, Farmer & California Center for Cooperative Development
There is a large and growing institutional food market for local growers to connect with. However, there are also challenges in both making that connection and developing sales relationships with institutions. This workshop will provide growers an understanding into what strategies will serve them best in selling to schools and other institutional buyers. Topics will include the basics of navigating the institutional market, best practices in working with institutions, regulations to consider, successful business and marketing strategies, and local examples.
Ben Thomas, Farm-to-Cafeteria Senior Program Manager, CAFF
Justin Grossman, Farm-to-Market Specialist, CAFF
Local Farmers and Institutional Buyers TBA
Skiddish about Credit? You're Not Alone
Debt can be a scary thing, especially when your business is new, or you're seeking to take your farm to the next level. But debt doesn't have to be frightening, and when managed correctly, it can be a tool you can wield to spur farm business success. Learn how financing can help address an obstacle or opportunity that you are facing and lead to increased profitability, and how to determine if and when a loan is the right step.
Soil-Centric Farming Demonstration
Join us for a hands-on, interactive demonstration focused on soil health indicators and the implementation of climate-smart farming and ranching practices. With the uncertain impacts of climate change hanging over every farm and ranch in California, learn the science behind practical, on-farm approaches to build nutrients, sequester carbon and decrease your carbon footprint.
Jessica Chiartas, Soil Life
Sara Tiffany, Climate Smart Farming Specialist CAFF
Farmland Monitoring: Mapping Tools for Land Access Campaigns
Land access for beginning farmers is a problem that pervades all aspects of the new entry farm experience. This workshop will demonstrate how online mapping tools can be used to engage with the land access barrier, providing a hands-on demonstration of the Farmland Monitoring Project (FMP), an interactive mapping project designed in collaboration with CA Farmlink and UC Berkeley to use public data of land ownership as a base to understand trends in land access. The workshop will discuss the structural challenges of land access, propose land access mapping as a way forward, and seek design feedback from participants.
Adam Calo, UC Berkeley
Careers in Sustainable Agriculture
Approximately 22 million Americans are involved in agriculture-related industries. Starting your own farm is just one of many exciting opportunities. Whether you're getting ready to graduate from school or considering a job change, join us to learn about the many, diverse pathways in food- and agricutlure, all of which help unite the farm and table, steward our natural resource and build more abundant, healthy communities.
Farm Marketing Roundtable
The Marketing Roundtable features 3-5 experienced farmers from around California who will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of particular markets. Our featured farmers will reveal lessons learned along the way and provide tips for farmers trying to expand their markets. Outlets included in this discussion will be retail, distributors, on-line sales, restaurants. CSA's and Farmers Markets.
Justin Grossman, Farm to Market Specialist CAFF
What do you have to lose? Whole Farm Revenue Protection
Come learn about Whole Farm Revenue Protection, a program for diversified farmers available through the USDA. Learn about reducing your risk with crop insurance, budgeting and crop insurance calculators. This interactive workshop will allow new farmers to think about what they stand to lose in the case of some catastrophe and how they might go about insuring their farm against losses.
California Intsitite for Rural Studies
National Sustainable Agriculture Assistance Program (NCAT)
Agricultural Justice Project
Annual Food & Ag Policy Forum
The success of your farm and of sustinable agriculture more generally depends not only on the boot-strapping perseverance of lone agrarians, but also on the context in which we farm. Regulations, subsidies, trade laws and other policies can either make or break family farms like ours. But can the voice of small-scale agrarians and local food communities be heard over the din of high-paid lobbyists and politicians far removed from the field? We believe so. But we need your help! Join us to express your concerns, ideas and questions related to state and national food and farming policies, crucial feedback that will help shape the political agenda of CAFF and the Farmers Guild in the year ahead as we take the fight to Sacramento and Washington DC!
Dave Runston, Policy Director & the CAFF Policy Committee
Student Farm Tour, UC Davis Student Farm
We are a community where students work to create, maintain and explore sustainable food systems. At the farm, students grow in many ways, learning from seasoned field-based educators, from their peers and from themselves. They come to understand sustainability through the soils, crops, climate and community in which they work. In the process, they gain the systems-based thinking and doing skills needed to make a positive difference in today’s world.
Katharina Ullmann, UC Student Farm Director