Monday, December 26, 2011

Upcoming Events in 2012

Farmer-to-Farmer Networking Breakfast
Wednesday, January 4, 2012 7:00-8:30 AM
Mel's Diner "The Back Room" 1730 Grass Valley Highway, Auburn
Join us for the first Placer/Nevada Farmer-to-Farmer networking breakfast of 2012. Come & meet other farmers and ranchers in Placer and Nevada counties. Enjoy a chance to relax and talk with other producers about issues affecting local agriculture. Full menu will be available, each producer will pay for his/her own breakfast, 18% tip will be added.
Please RSVP to Cindy Fake (cefake@ucdavis.edu) by 9 AM Jan. 3rd so we can give the restaurant a count. Hope to see you there!

Farm Marketing Academy

Friday, January 13th, 8 AM to 8 PM, and Saturday January 14, 8 AM to 5 PM.
UC Cooperative Extension, 11477 E Avenue, DeWitt Center, Auburn
Topics include:
· Growing for market
· Conducting market research
· Choosing your market strategy
· Prioritizing your markets
· Determining your market costs
· Determining your prices
· Managing your marketing risks
· Merchandizing and sales

$60 per person, meals included. Scholarships are available from the Placer Ag Futures Project.
Pre-registration is required, as class size is limited. Online registration at http://ucce.ucdavis.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=7735
For more information and scholarships, contact Cindy Fake, cefake@ucdavis.edu

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

California FarmLink 2011 Highlights


Meet Vonita Murray – young mom, farmer and veteran

Vonita came to us for help in starting her farm business. FarmLink helped her secure a lease that was advantageous and inclusive for both her and the landowner. Envisioning expansion, she said, “Given my limited experience and income, without FarmLink’s help it will be close to impossible for me to purchase the equipment I need for my operation.”

DONATE on our website: http://www.cafarmlink.org - click on the “Donate” button and help us reach our $25,000 goal.

Your contribution will directly help provide technical assistance, education, loans, mentors, linking to land, as well as help families pass on their farms/ranches to the next generation. We’re proud to partner with organizations like the Farmer Vet Coalition to have the biggest impact.

Overview
CA FarmLink is building regional food systems throughout California by providing access to land and capital for small-scale and beginning farmers. Reggie Knox, longtime farm program leader, is FarmLink’s new executive director.

Linked
• 35 farmers linked with land leases and partnerships
• 15 farmers with loans

Assisted
• 193 farmers with leases and purchases
• 130 farmers with financial management, business planning, building and maintaining credit
• 15 farm families with succession planning
• 21% of this assistance went to Latino and SE Asian farmers, 60% to limited-resource farmers, and 29% to women farmers

Serving Farmers Loan Program and Matched Savings Program
• CFL’s independent loan program fills a critical niche, serving small, direct-market, limited resource, organic and beginning farmers. FarmLink:
o is now a certified independent lender with the Department of Corporations
o became the first non-profit in 23 years to receive guaranteed lender status from the Farm Service Agency
o has made 30 farm loans, averaging $25,000 each, since beginning our loan program
• CFL’s matched-savings program deposits $200 each month into savings for 3 Santa Cruz County farmers towards farm asset purchases for every $100 they put in (collaboration with Santa Cruz Community Credit Union)

Monday, December 19, 2011

As of Thursday, videos of NRCS conservation practices will be available on the same medium, and with the same world-wide ease and accessibility, that is enjoyed by everyone from world leaders to piano-playing cats: YouTube.

Using the tagline "Conservation: There's a Plan for that," the videos introduce eight different scenarios where the NRCS approach of voluntary conservation has made a difference to satisfied customers in California. A brief glimpse is given of the planning and techniques used to benefit the land and the landowner. The NRCS "actors" are simply employees doing their everyday jobs, who are passionate professionals dedicated to helping people help the land. Hopefully, for many, these will make the world of NRCS conservation practices seem more accessible and familiar.

The eight practices portrayed are as follows:

* Conservation Planning
* Managing/Monitoring Irrigation Water (2 videos)
* Improving Forest Stands
* Managing for Livestock and Wildlife on Rangeland
* Building Hedgerows for Pollinators and other Benefits
* Decommissioning a Well
* Managing Nutrients (Wastewater) on Dairies

This link will connect to the new stories on Thursday, Dec. 15: http://www.youtube.com/user/NRCSCalifornia

Sunday, December 18, 2011

New Land Listing in El Dorado county!

El Dorado County ID #1368: 10 acre farm and home in Apple Hill for lease or partnership
Property features a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with two wood burning fireplaces, close to highway 50 in Camino. The ten acres is composed of about 5 acres of established apple orchard (~15 years old), and 3 acres of open ground. The owner intends to plant 1-2 acres of grapes. Remaining acreage is occupied by a Bake shop, commercial kitchen, indoor dining room and outdoor picnic area, all available to the tenant. The owner intends to use one building as a tasting room. Fudge and caramel corn equipment are also included in lease the lease. Additionally, use of 1/3 of a cold storage unit is available for tenant. Water is supplied by El Dorado Irrigation district water. This landowner also owns ID #1229, and is amendable to a joint venture between the two properties.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Today, the California Roundtable on Water and Food Supply launches a new and expanded online Agricultural Water Stewardship Resource Center to assist growers and ranchers, water suppliers, and others in making effective farm water management decisions. The Resource Center, online at http://agwaterstewards.org, includes a new searchable databaseand interactive map of innovative efforts around California to improve on-farm and regional water management. In addition, the website includes an expanded catalogue of information about a range of on-farm practices, as well as a library of technical support information and policy documents.


The California Roundtable on Water and Food Supply (CRWFS), a project of Ag Innovations Network, is a consensus-based forum for a broad range of leaders focused on enhancing water security for agriculture, the public and the environment. CRWFS appointed an Editorial Board of experts from the agricultural sector, University of California and California State University systems, the environmental community, and the water supply community to moderate the website and ensure balanced and accurate content.


We invite you to explore the Resource Center and share the on-farm practices, case studies, and ag water stewardship information with your networks.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

New Land Listing in Solano County

Solano County ID #1361: 2 acres and 2 bedroom home available for organic farmer.
2 bedroom, 2 bathroom house with garage and two horse barn on 2.5 acre property. Property features Solano Irrigation District water and is eligible for organic certification. Property is fenced.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Meet Vonita Murray - Young farmer, Veteran, Mom

Farmers and Ranchers provide the bounty
Help us continue to support them


We all know beginning farmers and ranchers face many challenges, and two of the biggest are access to land and money. California FarmLink provides both to our clients, and more. You can help them reach their goals with your donation to our organization. Please help us reach our goal of $25,000 by the end of the year. Your support and generosity is critical to our future.
Vonita Murray, a young mother and Navy veteran, came to us for help in starting her farm business. FarmLink helped her secure a lease that was advantageous and inclusive for both her and the landowner. Envisioning expansion, she said, "Given my limited experience and income, without FarmLink's help, it will be close to impossible for me to purchase the equipment I need for my operation." Connecting Vonita with an experienced farmer to mentor her has boosted her confidence, and her business.

Your contribution will directly help provide technical assistance, education, loans, mentors, linking to land, as well as help families pass on their farms/ranches to the next generation. We're proud to partner with organizations like the Farmer Vet Coalition (who've also helped Vonita) to have the biggest impact.

Please donate on our website via PayPal or send your check payable to California FarmLink at 609 Pacific Ave., # 101, Santa Cruz, CA 95060. No amount is too big or too small, as long as we reach our $25,000 goal!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

December 3rd Info session for the Farm Academy in Winters

Interested in becoming a farmer? Know someone who is? Well, here is your chance! The Center for Land-Based Learning is thrilled to announce that the California Farm Academy is now accepting applications through December 9, 2011 for its inaugural session. Classes are set to begin in mid-February, 2012 and run through early August. Get your application submitted early for preferred consideration, as space is limited!

Our tagline says it all - WE GROW FARMERS! In partnership with the Center for Land-Based Learning and a Specialty Block Crop Grant, the California Farm Academy trains, mentors, and leases land to beginning farmers. Our six month program will give you the practical know-how to start your own farming business!

Encompassing the basics of production of specialty crops and business planning and marketing, the training will include guest speakers, hands-on activities, field work, and farm visits. In addition, each participant's experience in the program will be tailored to their background and farming goals through their individual learning plan and an independent study project. We are accommodating the working professional by holding classes in early evenings and on weekends.

We invite you to find out more, share this program with your friends and apply online at: CaliforniaFarmAcademy.org or call us at (530) 795-4146

Visit us out at the farm on Saturday, December 3rd for an information session - free of charge. The Information Session will be held at the Center for Land-Based Learning from 1-4 p.m. at 5265 Putah Creek Road, Winters, CA 95694. Hope to see you there as we take the first steps in growing tomorrow's farmers!