SATURDAY, DEC 13
Creating a Business Plan + Market Research
Deborah Walton, Canvas Ranch
When it comes to starting a farm, the bridge between a dream and reality is a good business plan. Using her experience managing Canvas Ranch as well as a long background in marketing, Deborah Walton will guide us in the steps that come before breaking ground: market research, adding up the numbers, and creating a comprehensive plan for your farming operation.
Budgeting & Book-keeping
Thomas Hjerpe, Rosie Wentworth & Judith Ferreira, Financial Resource Center
Budget management is key to the success of any business. This workshop will guide students in problem solving techniques, even during difficult times. The Financial Resource Center (FRC) is a non-profit organization that has provided budget development and support services to individuals and small businesses on the North Coast for over 25 years. As Education Coordinator of FRC, Rosie Wentworth has worked with hundreds of individuals and families through the one-on-one Financial Coaching program. Judith Ferreira has run an organic dairy farm with her husband for over 30 years, in addition to her work as a bookkeeper. Thomas Hjerpe is an attorney who currently serves as the Board President of the FRC.
~ LUNCH ~
Financing Your Farm
Elizabeth U, author of Raising Dough: The Complete Guide to Financing a Socially Responsible Food Business
Access to capital is imperative to new farmers. But in today's entrepreneurial world, financing comes in many shapes and sizes. From Kickstarter to Kiva Zip, learn about money beyond the bank and how these new options are geared to help farmers just like you. Elizabeth Ü is the author of Raising Dough: The Complete Guide to Financing a Socially Responsible Food Business, designed to help entrepreneurs navigate the complex and ever-evolving wold of financing options.
Permits, Licensing, and Regulation
Julia Van Soelen & Karen Giovannini, UC Cooperative Extension
Few farmers revel in the joys of regulation, but an understanding of permits and licensing will prepare new entrepreneurs for a smooth ride towards success, so you can spend more time on what's important. In this workshop, you'll learn what questions to ask, where to seek answers, and how to prepare for growth and diversification on your farm. Julia Van Soelen Kim, MPH, MS is the North Bay Food Systems Advisor, UC Cooperative Extension. Karen Giovannini is the Agriculture Ombudsman.
Adding Value to Your Farm Products
Marrilee Olsen, PRESERVE Sonoma
From cider to kale chips, salsa to salami, adding value to your farm products can offer a huge economic advantage. Merrilee Olsen is the founder of PRESERVE Sonoma, a specialty food producer creating unique, delicious products inspired by regional foods. From custom co-packing services to private labels, PRESERVE Sonoma sources local harvest to make the products consumers want. Learn the basics of turning your raw ingredients into artisan products ready for market.
~ EVENING ENTERTAINMENT ~
INTERGENERATIONAL FARMER HAPPY HOUR
HOLIDAY PARTY / COOKBOOK RELEASE PARTY / VALUE-ADDED STOCKING-STUFFER SALE
SUNDAY, DEC 14
Mapping Your Farm
Ruthie King, Grange Farm School
Each farm and parcel of land is unique, but the basic tools of mapping your farm will offer any new enterprise the ability to plan effectively. Ruthie King is the Assistant Director of the Grange Farm School. In this hands-on workshop, you'll explore surveying and drafting techniques to plan for growth, function-staking and resilience.
Land Lease Clinic
The number one obstacle facing new is access to land. The Farmlink team will provide farmers with the information they need to mitigate the legal and financial risks of lease agreements and land tenure. This workshop will cover types of lease agreements, best practices, alternative lease clauses, the legal and financial risks of poorly developed agreements, and more.
~ LUNCH ~
Production Planning & Record Keeping
Kevin McEnnis, Quetzel Farm
Spreadsheets are rarely a farmer's forte, but ask those who succeed and they'll tell you: keeping good records assures that your time in the field is spent most effectively. Since 1999, Kevin McEnnis has farmed at Quetzel Farm, and during those years has developed an easy and effective system of recording-keeping and crop planning. Whether you're raising chickens or turnips, these practical skills can make a world of difference and free up your valuable time.
Stormy Knight, Net 101
Everyday people go online to find your products. By taking a few simple steps, you can make sure that you are where your market goes looking. Don’t let tech intimidation keep you from successfully using the internet to create more customers. In this workshop, marketing consultant Stormy Knight will cover how to be found in your local online market, how to look great when they find you, and much more.