Friday, June 29, 2012

Seminar on Organic Production in Northern California!

You are invited to join OFAC & NorCal CAPCA Chapter at the upcoming organic production seminar.

DATE: Thursday, July 12, 2012 
Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
1075 East 20th Street, The Big Room    
Chico, CA
TIME: 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Registration 7:30 a.m.
Registration fee includes lunch.   

For event details and registration information visit
CAPCAed at

(On-line registration only) 

Pre-registration deadline for this event is July 5, 2012.
If you have not yet registered, please register on-line today!
Space is limited. 

For additional information please contact:
Steve Beckley at 539-4107 or
Joyce Basan at 928-1625 X201  

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Webinar on Crop Insurance for diversified farms, tomorrow!

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) will offer a webinar on Thursday, June 28, to explain  Adjusted Gross Revenue Lite (AGR-Lite)— a unique federally subsided crop-insurance product that holds great promise to serve the needs of smaller, diverse, specialty crop, organic, and direct-market farmers. 

Crop insurance agents, agricultural lenders, and cooperative extension agents from the Southeastern states are especially encouraged to attend this June 28 webinar, which will be tailored to their needs.  The webinar will feature regionally-appropriate examples from the Southeast, and there will be ample time for attendees to ask questions about both AGR-Lite and the AGR-Lite Wizard.

While most insurance products are tied to a specific crop or commodity, AGR-Lite is based on whole-farm revenue, and allows farmers who grow several specialty crops, or diverse crops and livestock products, to insure their production based on their historic revenue.

The webinar, "AGR-Lite—Understanding Whole-Farm Insurance for the Specialized and Diversified Farm," will explain how AGR-Lite works, provide a brief overview of crop-insurance limitations for specialized and highly diverse farms, and will also demonstrate NCAT’s new AGR-Lite Wizard assessment tool. This tool assists farmers and agricultural professionals in evaluating the usefulness of whole-farm revenue insurance.

Jeff Schahczenski, an NCAT Agricultural Economist, will be the webinar presenter.

The webinar will begin at 1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Thursday, June 28, 2012. It is funded by the USDA Risk Management Agency.

To learn more or to register, go to

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Farm Bill Update--Good News!!!

Thank you to everyone who took action today!

The Brown Amendment #2445 just PASSED 55-44!

This is great news for beginning farmer programs like FarmLink and those that depend on them!

Farm Bill Action Needed TODAY!!!

This is crunch time for the 2012 Farm Bill: the Senate will vote on farm bill amendments in a big VOTE-O-RAMA* today, including several that are make or break for beginning farmers, rural communities, and conservation.

Senators filed over 300 amendments to the bill, and only 25% made the cut for a vote. Your calls and emails make a difference and are essential to helping FarmLink continue to serve the farming community.

Please call or email your Senators TODAY and ask them to vote for:


Senator Brown’s amendment (#2445) will fund critical programs like the Beginning
Farmer and Rancher Development Program, Value-Added Producer Grants, and
the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program – these programs create jobs and
foster the next generation of farmers and ranchers!

* A Vote-O-Rama is what it’s called when Congress debates and votes on a big list of amendments in a big hurry!

Every single call or email you make has an impact on how your Senators will vote in the
next few hours. Call/email your Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein TODAY and ask for their SUPPORT on amendment #2445 (Brown) to fund rural development and beginning and socially disadvantaged farmer programs!

Senator Boxer 
Phone: (202) 224-3553, 
Senator Feinstein 
Phone: (202) 224-3841, 

Email using the template below:

Subject: Please SUPPORT Brown #2445!

Dear Senator,

I am a constituent and a voter.

As the farm bill moves to the Senate floor for debate, please ensure that rural communities and
beginning farmers are not left behind.

I urge you to vote YES for Brown #2445 to support rural development and beginning and socially disadvantaged farmer programs!


THANK YOU FarmLinkers!!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Integrating Pastured Poultry and Crop Production Workshop and Farm Tour

Workshop and Farm Tour, June 28 and 29 in Davis, California
Please join us for a two-day event about combining pastured poultry with cropping operations.
Thursday, June 28, is a workshop as outlined below. Friday, June 29, is a tour to nearby farms that successfully combine pastured poultry and other crops or livestock.

Who should attend this event? Farmers who are considering a pastured poultry enterprise. Farmers with pastured poultry operations who would like to learn more. People who are interested in starting to farm.
Location: Meet both days at Glide Ranch, 36355 Russell Blvd, Davis, CA
Dates: Workshop June 28, 8:30am–5pm and Farm Tour (travel by bus) June 29, 8:30am–4pm
Cost: $20 to cover both days. Thanks to a grant from the USDA Risk Management Agency, NCAT is able to offer these workshops without charge to participants except for the cost of lunches.
Presented by: National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) and ATTRA—the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service, with funding from the USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA).

Workshop Topics
•    Production practices: Raising chicks, housing, feed, forages, flock health, and strategies for integrating and rotating poultry with crops and other livestock
•    Regulations and food safety: Existing federal, state and local regulations for egg handling and on-farm processing of meat birds; emerging food safety rules and common sense considerations for keeping good food safe
•    Business planning and marketing: Enterprise and cash flow budgeting, recordkeeping, and pricing for financial sustainability

For more information, please see:
Featured Farmers
•    Chris Hay of Say Hay Farms,
•    Nigel Walker of Eatwell Farm (invited),
•    Alexis and Eric Koefoed of Soul Food,
Please register online promptly!
Workshop capacity is 30 participants. Because we will cover a great deal of information in this workshop and will travel by charter bus for the farm tours, we appreciate your commitment to participate both days whenever possible.
To register and provide payment information, visit and click on EVENTS at the top of the page.
Or follow this link to the registration page: 06/28 09:00am Pastured Poultry Workshop & Farm Tours in California
You can help us tailor this workshop to your needs by sending an email to briefly describing any specific questions or challenges in your operation that you hope to address.
This is the third of five regional pastured poultry and crop production workshops and farm tours offered by NCAT in 2012. North Coast and Southern California workshops will be held later this summer. Dates and locations will be announced soon.

NCAT/ATTRA Agriculture Specialist Ann Baier,
NCAT/ATTRA Livestock Specialist Pamela
NCAT/ATTRA Agriculture Specialist Rex

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Urban Cultivators is looking for growers to expand their urban farming opportunities

Urban Cultivators is a backyard conservation initiative for the Sacramento Hispanic community.  The initiative is supported by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)* and coordinated by Carmen Fisher with the NRCS Sacramento County office in Elk Grove.

With a growing local urban community, the Elk Grove office will continue to support farmers and their work, but we must look toward the future of backyard conservation.  Elk Grove sees Urban Cultivators as the next step in educating the greater public on the social and environmental benefits of creating a healthy neighborhood through conservation.

With this initiative, we are promoting urban gardens and greenhouses to encourage proactive community contribution and participation.  Urban gardening is about using space wisely to regain a closer connection with food and beautify the neighborhood.  Investment in urban gardens and similar practices also creates opportunities for agricultural education and workshops to encourage conservation and healthy living with greater access to fresh and nutritious fruits and vegetables.

Urban Cultivators will evaluate current conservation efforts and tailor backyard conservation to meet the needs of the Hispanic community.  With the help of community organizers, we will 
build relationships to expand and strengthen the local Hispanic farming movement.  We hope to help Hispanic urban gardening groups eventually own and operate their own land with conservation practices as a priority and produce enough food to sell at the community’s own farmers’ market.

If you are a grower that is interested in creating urban farming opportunities in the Sacramento Hispanic community, please contact Carmen with the Natural Resources Conservation Service,

Job Opening at Riverhill farm!

Field Worker
Riverhill Farm
Nevada City, CA

 Riverhill Farm is a CCOF-certified organic farm in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California, near Nevada City.  Nevada City is a small town with a vibrant farm community and great Farmers' Market at 2500' elevation.  We are cultivating more than ten acres this season, and our season runs from June to November.  For more information about our farm, see our website at or find us on Facebook, where you can see recent photos of the farm.

We have an immediate opening for an experienced field worker.  Must have at least one full season on a diversified vegetable farm, be hard working and clear about your commitment to working a full season on a farm.  The work week is forty hours with an occasional Saturday Farmers' Market.  Housing may be provided.

To apply, submit a resume, cover letter and at least two farm-related references by email to  A farm visit and interview is required. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Empowering Women Veterans Conference, July 7-8

Farmer Veteran Coalition Hopes to Educate and Prepare Female Veterans Beginning Careers in Food and Farming
Davis, CA April 2012—With the help of the USDA Risk Management Agency and Annie’s Project,the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) is excited to host the “Empowering Women Veterans: Business, Agriculture & Well-Being” conference in Davis, Ca on July 7-8, 2012. This conference will be the first of its kind, aiming to bring women veterans together in an environment specifically designed to address their unique experiences and needs in agriculture.
Upon re-entry into the civilian population, veterans face increasingly high unemployment rates. The number of homeless female veterans more than doubled from 2006 to 2010. At this conference, women leaders in business and agriculture will speak to female veteran participants about the challenges faced by women, the tools to mitigate risk in their agricultural ventures, and available programs to help women farmers succeed. Educational topics will include the RMA five areas of risk(production, price (market), financial, legal, and personal); business structure and farm contracts; an introduction to Quicken Software (with free software); loans, debt & credit; direct marketing; and farm labor.
FVC Fellowship Fund Director Tia Christopher explains that, “this conference will raise awareness of the attendees’ national and local benefits and resources, and will address their needs both as veterans and as farmers. These powerful women will have a chance to learn about and take with them valuable resources which will support and ease their transition into agriculture.”
Interested parties may contact: or call FVC at (530) 756-1395. The Farmer Veteran Coalition seeks to mobilize our food and farming community to create healthy and viable futures for veterans on America’s farms.
Farmer Veteran Coalition, 508 2nd Street, Suite 206, Davis, CA 95616

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Agritourism Workshops at County Fairs

The University of California's small farm program and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) Division of Fairs and Expositions are teaming up to connect fruit, vegetable, nut and flower farmers with county and regional fairs to celebrate California specialty crops. Together they are organizing workshops and tours for farmers and agricultural leaders at seven different fairs throughout the state, to be held during the 2012 fair season.

The workshop schedule:
Thursday, June 14                  Shasta District Fair, Anderson
Thursday, July 26                   Amador County Fair, Plymouth
Thursday, August 2                Ventura County Fair, Ventura
Thursday, August 9                Napa Town & Country Fair, Napa
Thursday, August 16              Yolo County Fair, Woodland
Thursday, September 13         Santa Cruz County Fair, Watsonville
Thursday, October 4               Big Fresno Fair, Fresno

For registration and more information about these events, visit or call Penny Leff at (530) 752-7779.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Calls are needed now to urge your U.S. Senators to support the Brown amendment

The Senate Agriculture Committee’s version of the 2012 Farm Bill is up for debate by the full Senate
this week. But it looks like they forgot to include a few things in the farm bill – like robust
funding for rural development and beginning and socially disadvantaged farmer programs.

That’s right! Programs that boost jobs through rural entrepreneurship, invest in the future of
American agriculture, and provide assistance to historically underserved farmers received little-to-no
funding in Committee’s bill.

How could these important programs get left behind?

Fortunately, there is still a chance to ensure that these programs are not forgotten. Senator Sherrod
Brown (D-OH) along with other interested Senators, are considering offering
an amendment that restores funding to crucial rural development and beginning and socially
disadvantaged farmer programs including:

Will you support their efforts to ensure the 2012 Farm Bill creates jobs in rural America and
invests in the next generation of farmers?

Call your Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein TODAY and ask for their support
on the possible amendment that funds rural development and beginning and socially
disadvantaged farmer programs:

Senator Boxer; 202-224-3553
Senator Feinstein; (202) 224-3841

Your Senators need to hear that you want a farm bill with real reform and real improvements for
our rural places and the future of farming. Don’t delay – the Senate is about to start debate on the
2012 Farm Bill, so they need to hear from you TODAY.

Slow Food Sacramento, June 9th!

Slow Food Sacramento's 4th Annual Urban Ag Fest Eat! Learn! Enjoy!
Saturday, June 9th Showcase Reception 4pm-5:30pm, Dinner 6pm
Rosemont High School
9594 Kiefer Blvd
Sacramento, CA 95827

Purchase your tickets TODAY!
Urban Ag Fest IV Ticket Sales End Soon
$20 Showcase Reception (under 18 free for reception only)
$75 Showcase Reception and Dinner
Interested in volunteering at this event?

Friday, June 1, 2012

New Land Opportunity Posting in Elk Grove

Sacramento County ID #1410: 5-8 acres available for organic farm. Two adjacent five acre lots, formerly a horse business up until January 2012, available for organic production. One five acre plot has it's own well and sprinkler system. The second five acre plot shares a well with property owner and has a barn that is available for some storage and has a bathroom.

New Land opp posting

Lassen County ID #1409: 80 acre property for lease with option to purchase This property is off the grid, and sits on the boarder of California and Nevada on route 447 in Surprise Valley, California. Property features an 80 gpm ag well, stock pond, good soil and a 3,000 square foot steel barn. The land is fenced with but repair work is needed on the north side of the property. There is cell phone reception if you have Verizon or a satellite phone. Owners require organic production methods.