The success of the next generation of farmers and ranchers is crucially dependant on whether they can secure suitable land to start and expand their operations. According to the 2012 Census of Agriculture, the number of new farmers and ranchers in the United States decreased 20 percent from 2007 and hit a 30-year low. In acknowledgement of this barrier for young farmers, the American Farmland Trust have just recently announced that 24 experienced educators will serve as Land Access Trainers to help beginning farmers and ranchers secure agricultural land. This will be part of a nationwide, four-year-long project and the chosen trainers are located in each of the 10 U.S. farm production regions. The American Farmland Trust is a national nonprofit organization that works to protect farmland, promote sound farming practices and keep farmers on the land.
Did you have the experience of entering a coloring contest to win an over-sized Easter bunny, or perhaps a pie baking competition for gift basket filled with all manner of goodies? I clearly remember those moments from my childhood – moments that now seem quite unrealistic in terms of how things actually work in the world.
Here’s the equivalent over-sized Easter bunny for the young agrarian: Award-winning architect-turned-farmer Norma Burns has decided to give her beautiful farm away in an essay contest. Norma has been growing herbs, vegetables, and cut flowers on the certified organic, 13 acre farm for the last eighteen years. Continue reading
Apply for Glynwood Farm’s Business Incubator!
The deadline for initial applications and letters of intent for Glynwood’s Hudson Valley Farm Business Incubator (HVFBI) has been extended to January 6, 2017, with the 2017 program beginning in early next May.
HVFBI is taking the “long view” on supporting a new generation of farmers in the region, equipping participants with the tools and guidance to successfully get there. Visit their website for more information.
More info here.
“A coalition of growers is working with Haringey Council to explore taking on Wolves Lane, a 2 acre former plant nursery in north London. The goal is to turn the site into a centre/hub for community food enterprise and prevent the loss of the extensive rare urban glasshouse infrastructure.
The lead partner is Organiclea, an award winning and internationally renowned workers’ co-operative with over 15 years of experience doing similar work in a neighbouring London borough. They have a 12 acre site nearby and are currently supporting new groups of growers to take on sites under their farmstart program.
The aim is for an initiative that grows and distributes sustainably produced food to local residents and businesses; engages a wide range of people in learning and skills activities, and health and well-being benefits; establishes itself as a centre for promoting healthy eating; and offers space for community groups and social enterprises to run activities that benefit the community.
A presentation is being given to the council on 10th October and the pitch would be greatly enhanced if we could find seed funding of £20k. Given the tight turn around of this bid, we are seeking this from private donors and trusts; this money could be given as a gift or a ten year loan, if preferred.
Please contact Brian Kelly on 07816 930585 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to find out more.”
[[[[[[[THIS LAND IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE. PLEASE DO NOT CONTACT APC WITH REQUESTS FOR INFO.]]]]]]]]]
The Appalacian Catholic Worker has put out a call for someone to rent a beloved but human-starved piece of land in West Virginia. [Edit: please note that this is NOT a Greenhorns offer. The following text is from the APC, whose contact information is towards the bottom of the post.] Read on for more information:
OUR LAND TRUST HAS A 65 ACRE TRACT THAT IS CURRENTLY EXPERIENCING PEOPLELESSNESS ***** (contrary to urban homelessness, many rural homesteads suffer from peoplelessness, sometimes chronic/cyclical) One of Appalachian Catholic Worker’s community projects is being on the board of directors for the “Regional Land Trust of West Virginia.” RLTWV lands have been protected since 1969, and are close ‘cousins’ with “Trust in the Hills” land trust in WV, started by CWers, Chuck Smith and Sandy Adams (dubbed by Dorothy Day herself as the quintessential examples of CW farmers!)
Currently, RLTWV has a 65 acre tract -mostly wooded hillsides – that would be the perfect place to start your own homestead or CW community. Get a free life-time lease for: – About 10 acres of cleared flat bottom for a big garden or pasturing small livestock; – a pond up on the hill – the old hippie house needs lots of TLC and skilled handiwork or just be lived in as a new one is built – wood stove, water well and pump, electric, telephone land line, indoor compost toilet – and the land taxes this year were only $471.00 !!!
The majority of the board wants to let it go (sell it! God forbid!) because, – since this tract was annexed in 2013, we haven’t been able to find conscientious care-takers who don’t trash the place, or potential lease-holders who can stick around very long. – The board doesn’t want to have to afford (and I can’t myself) the additional taxes on top of the other lands we are responsible for. – We’re an older, or already-swamped, voluntarily-poor board, without the energy or time to clean up the messes or maintain the land.
Mission of RLTWV is … 1. Providing access to land for the landless; 2. Promoting the ecological use of land for the common good; 3. Protecting land from speculation; 4. Encouraging a new relationship with land that sees it as the common heritage of all people, not as the private property of a few, nor as a commodity to be exchanged; 5. Developing networks of support and fellowship that will strengthen those on trust lands in times of need or ecological threat to the land; 6. Supporting efforts for land reform everywhere.
Looks like a job for SUPER CWs or their counterparts!! Your new address would be: 881 Slab Fork Rd. Spencer, WV 25276 about 10 miles from town (last 2 are gravel), relatively reliable transportation would be needed. There are currently FIVE other CW houses spread out around the state of WV each doing different ministries. You’d have an automatic extended intentional community AND a wonderful, tightly knit, REGION-WIDE network of fellow radically-minded, environmentally friendly folks, catholic, not-so-Catholic, and not-Catholic.
The Roots & Fruits Farm Business Incubator in Black Mountan, NC provides the tools and resources aspiring agricultural entrepreneurs need to develop and manage viable farm enterprises in Appalachia. The Incubator reduces the traditional barriers to success for new farm businesses by providing access to land, shared equipment, infrastructure, low-interest capital, business mentoring, and training in advanced practical skills. Launching farm-based businesses in the supportive, low-risk environment of the Incubator greatly increases the likelihood of business viability and success.
Once their businesses have matured to the point of self-sufficiency, we will assist Incubator graduates in transitioning to longer-term landholdings in the region, ensuring they will have a place to operate their businesses independently while also bringing more land into production. Through the Incubator, we will be ushering in a new generation of profitable, conservation-oriented farm entrepreneurs while bringing more preserved farmland into production and investing in farm communities across the region.
We are currently seeking proposals for the 2016-2018 seasons. The length of the lease period will be 2 years. All needed infrastructure is in place, including water supply, irrigation lines, chicken coop & run, hoop houses, greenhouse, wash facilities, cold storage, and a multi-purpose shed. All business infrastructures are in place, including direct selling through Roots & Fruits market & café.
Jump-start your farm business on the Front Porch of North Carolina! Are you looking for a low-risk entry point for your organic and biologically intensive farm practice? Join us in our campaign to re-imagine human-scale food systems. Together we will empower through education and build an inspiring community through food.
Learn more and apply at: http://rootsandfruitsmarket.com/?p=326.