Wednesday, January 14 - Saturday, 17, 2015
Event Link: Practical Tools and Solutions for Sustaining Family Farms Conference
Organized By: Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (SAWG)
The 24th annual Southern SAWG conference is for serious organic and sustainable producers, farm to school participants, urban farmers or those interested in creating more vibrant community food systems. The event offers informative pre-conference courses and field trips, practical conference sessions, networking, trade show, Taste of Alabama event and more. Each year, participants go home with information to use immediately to improve their operations. Click here for more information.
Making Your Market Farm Work for You
Thursday, January 15, 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Your market farm should work for you, in addition to you working for your farm — and that requires taking care of your vegetables and your business, as well as your life. Learn how you can put it all together, from the market farming fundamentals of weed control, irrigation, post-harvest handling and marketing, to the management of your farming systems, employees and finances. Consultant, educator and farmer Chris Blanchard will help you understand and control the factors that lead to a profitable market farm without driving you and your family crazy. Chris will draw on 25 years of farming experience to provide both big ideas and practical examples in this engaging session.
(Please note, this pre-conference mini-course requires pre-registration.)
Saving Labor (Saving Money!) on the Market Farm
Friday, January 16, 9:00 AM
Market farming is all about moving stuff around, whether you're moving vegetables from the field to the packing house, water from the well to your transplants, or seeds from packets to the soil. We'll explore efficient systems and practical tools used by successful market farms for seeding crops in the field and greenhouses, transplanting sets, pruning and greenhouse crop maintenance, weeding, harvesting, post-harvest handling, materials handling, and record-keeping.
Ten Things to Think About When Starting a Market Farm
Friday, January 16, 1:30 PM
Getting started in market farming means more than just growing vegetables. It means taking on the responsibilities of owning a business, managing markets, grappling with philosophies, and managing a labor force. Join Chris Blanchard, who has over 20 years experience in managing and owning a market farm, for a look at ten things to think about as you prepare the ground for starting your farm, or as you seek to expand your market farm into a significant income-generator for yourself and your family.
Southern SAWG Conference: Practical Tools and Solutions for Sustaining Family Farms General Conference