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beginning farmers to gather in greenfield, mass

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December 12, 9:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
The Arts Block, 4 Court Square, Greenfield, MA 01301
youngfarmers.org/winter-gathering

Join the Northeast New Agrarian Network—a new coalition of farm organizations with a focus on young and beginning farmers—at the First Northeast New Farmer Winter Gathering on December 12 in Greenfield, Massachusetts. The convergence will bring together farmers based across New England and New York State to consider issues facing agricultural community today: from diversity and justice, to organizing and leveraging the collective voice of young farmers towards legislative change.

New England Farmers Union is one of seven organizations hosting this event. The others are the National Young Farmer Coalition and its Hudson Valley, NY, chapter; the Beginning Farmer Network of Massachusetts; New Connecticut Farmer Alliance; Young Farmer Network (RI); and the Harvard Food Literacy Project.

“New England Farmers Union is excited to be a part of this coalition bringing new farmers together and launching a network here in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts,” said Kate Snyder, director of membership and programs for New England Farmers Union. “Supporting beginning farmers is an important part of our mission and works toward ensuring local agriculture continues to thrive in our region.”

Farmers and farm advocates will converge at the Arts Block (4 Court Square) and begin the day with a morning-long anti-oppression training, focusing on inclusiveness in the agrarian community and diversity in local food production and consumption. In the afternoon, workshops on farmer co-operatives and local, regional, and national advocacy will convene, followed by informal discussion groups on issues from farmer organizing and coalition building, to production affinity groups considering challenges and best practices, to issues of access and justice, and the potential for impact as new farmers working to build a sustainable food system.

The party starts at 5 p.m. after a brief welcome from the host organizations. There will be old time music, pizza, provided by Guiding Star Grange #1, and a cash bar. The working schedule is below.

9:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. Anti-Oppression Training
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. Lunch on your own in Greenfield
1:30 – 3:30 p.m.Workshops on farm co-operatives, and agricultural advocacy
3:30 – 5:00 p.m. Discussion and affinity groups on faming, local and regional coordinating access, justice, advocacy, collective impact, and best practices
5:00 – 7:45 p.m. Pizza, cash bar, old time music, fun, solidarity, etc. (we will move the party downstairs to the Wheelhouse at 8 p.m.)

This event is free and open to the public. Donations are welcome. If you are planning to attend, please RSVP at youngfarmers.org/winter-gathering. visit the event page at  www.facebook.com/events/843469522430841/ to arrange carpooling and local informal lodging.

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