Monday, January 30, 2017

Title: Building Soil, Building Wealth Bilingual Workshop
Creating healthy land and people through Holistic Management
  • Date: February 25
  • Time: 9am to 4pm
  • Hosts/Sponsors: Jefferson Center for Holistic Management, Soul Food Farm, Savory Institute
Event: Attend a regenerative agriculture and holistic management workshop by at Soul Food Farm in Vacaville, California.  The workshop will be taught by Savory Institute-accredited field professional Spencer Smith.  
  • Workshop Highlights:
    • How to minimize input costs and increase profit using Holistic Management alone
    • How to create healthy soil that increases crop yields and forage production
    • Learn how to read the land and identify ecosystem processes
    • How to use Holistic Planned Grazing to improve soil fertility
Price: $100 per ticket online, $120 at the door
  • Discounts: please contact us for business partner or group discount rates,
Learn more and register here.

Friday, January 27, 2017

There will be a food safety workshop for Hmong and Mien growers in the Merced area on February 15. Growers from around the Valley, including Fresno, are welcome to attend as well. Please see the attached flyer for more details.

Food Safety Good Agricultural Practices Training
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
9:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
UC Cooperative Extension Merced County
2145 Wardrobe Avenue, Merced, CA 95341

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Part Time Seasonal Farm Assistant / Harvest Help Heavy Dirt Farm

24830 County Road 95
Davis CA 95616
Mid-March - Mid-November
M-W-F mornings   ~ 20 hrs per week
Friday Farmers Market harvest is a full day May - October

About the Farm
Heavy Dirt Farm (established 2012) is home to a small residential community and a vegetable farm. We consciously grow food for the local community, and participate in various forms of meaningful land based work in order to create a holistic interconnected farm system of people, plants, animals, and the land. The sole proprietor of the vegetable farm is seeking assistance for the duration of the growing season for planting, maintaining, and harvesting 1.5 acres of vegetables & orchard fruit.
We also have a small breeding flock of sheep, and rotationally graze them using an electric fence during the grass season (October - May).
We sell our produce through a small year-round CSA program, a few local restaurants, and a small farmer’s market in Sacramento. Although we are not currently certified Organic, we manage the market garden thoughtfully and holistically.  Our practices include:
  • No chemical applications: our inputs include OMRI listed compost, animal manures, & Diatomaceous Earth for pest control
  • Soil preparation using a small walk-behind tractor
  • Manual cultivation: weed control using hoes & other hand tools
  • Occultation: weed control with reusable black silage tarps
  • Minimal tillage
  • Regular Cover Cropping & Crop rotation
  • Interplanting
  • Straw mulching
  • Shade cloth for Summer greens: Reusable for MANY years, and greatly reduces water loss.
  • Drip irrigation
  • Native & insectary hedgerows
  • Plenty of research & experimentation!
For more information, check out our website (, our facebook page (Heavy Dirt Farm), or our instagram account (heavy_dirt_farm).

Responsibilities include:
  • Support Farmer in all aspects of farm operation in the field and in the packing shed, including but not limited to:
    • Harvest!!
    • Sowing & Transplanting
    • Weeding & Cultivating with hand tools
    • Spreading compost using shovels and a hand cart
    • Irrigation
    • Washing & packing vegetables
    • Maintaining a tidy packing shed, cooler, and barn.
    • Record keeping
    • Moving electric fence, and running sheep out to pasture.
  • Additional training and responsibilities in others area of interest may be available if applicable. There is a possibility for this position to evolve into a full- or part-time partnership, with profit sharing, for an experienced candidate.
  • Hours are generally Monday mornings - Wednesday mornings - Friday all day with some flexibility and seasonal variation in the hours worked. The MWF schedule is strict to accommodate our weekly CSA and market harvest.
  • Season-long commitment through mid-November. Exact dates are somewhat flexible. There is a possibility for this position to evolve into a full-time, year-round management position for the right candidate.
  • General familiarity with fruits, vegetables, and passion for good food and sustainable agriculture.
  • Interest in pursuing a career in small-scale market farming.
  • Excited to work on a communally managed property hosting multiple independent yet interrelated projects.
  • Farm work experience preferred.
  • Ability to drive manual transmission preferred.
  • Reliable transportation
  • Ability and commitment to be reliable and consistent. The veggies don’t stop growing once the heat comes, so we must be there to harvest them EVERY M-W-F.
  • Physical ability to lift 50#, bend and stoop for long periods, and perform repetitive tasks (No applicant will be rejected because of a condition or impairment that, with reasonable accommodation, does not prevent performance of work.)
  • Ability to withstand Summer temperatures in excess of 100 degrees and Spring / Fall work in rain and cold.
  • Applicant should be self-motivated, hardworking, and eager to learn. Flexibility is a must as tasks are varied and the nature of work on our diverse small farm can be highly dynamic.
This is a part-time seasonal position with the possibility for more hours during the height of the growing season (July - October). Compensation will be minimum wage ($10.50/hr) to start with access to farm produce as available. Eggs and lamb may be bought at a discount.
An ideal applicant is interested in participating in many aspects of a small-scale, diversified farming operation & homesteading. Low cost on-site housing opportunities may be available at a future date with the approval of other farm residents.
To apply, please send a resume including:
  1. Hours of availability M - W - F, and factors that might affect them between now and November.
  2. Past work experience, including specific responsibilities and duties
  3. Your goals relating to market farming.
  4. Farming demands a lot of diverse skills. What specific skills / interests do you have? (carpentry, machine operation & repair, cooking, writing, plumbing, welding, art, retail sales, computers, etc...)
  5. 2 references
Send to: heavydirtcsa@gmail.comWe will contact you to coordinate an on-farm interview. If you have additional questions, feel free to contact us.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Work at California FarmLink!

Grants and Programs Manager – Job Announcement

Status: Full time, Exempt

Reports to: Executive Director, works closely with Programs, Development and Finance

Primary Office: Santa Cruz

Salary: 50 to 65k commensurate with experience


The Grants and Programs Manager will shape the next phase of growth for California FarmLink, expand programs in support of underserved and beginning farmers and work with all FarmLink departments to support strong programs aligned with FarmLink’s values and vision. The position will be responsible for overseeing farmer technical assistance programs, while building on a strong track record of fundraising with government agencies, foundations and banks.

The Grants and Programs Manager will collaborate with FarmLink’s development and program teams to lead the development of grant proposals and track program implementation. This new position will forge an exciting strategy for the organization to engage prospective institutional funders, increase dialogue with existing funders, and create a coordinated framework to unify land and capital programs within a Community Development Financial Institution framework.

This position supervises and serves as a resource for Regional Program Coordinators in the Central Coast, North Coast and Central Valley regions; manages grant-funded activities; tracks work plans, deliverables and deadlines; coordinates staff reporting to funders; and assists in planning new projects that serve the land and capital access needs of farmers. The Grants and Programs Manager will advance program evaluation, data collection, and monitor impact and fulfillment of goals. This is a full-time position based in Santa Cruz or Watsonville, CA with regular local travel within California.


Fundraising and Development (~60%)

Fundraising goal for 2017: $1,500,000. The Grants and Programs Manager will lead FarmLink’s grant writing process. Roughly half of grant income comes in the form of renewal grants from existing funders.

 Lead grant writing and proposal development, manage grant and contract pipeline, and monitor renewal schedules

 Work with Development Team to lead new funder prospecting, outreach and cultivation and manage grants in a Salesforce CRM database

 Cultivate and strengthen fundraising partnerships with partner organizations

Funder Reporting and Communications (~15%)

Manage FarmLink’s grant reporting calendar, gather input on program progress from staff, analyze data from FarmLink databases (Salesforce CRM and DownHome Loan Manager) and submit timely reports to funders.

 Use Salesforce to track funder reporting schedule and improve this system as necessary in conjunction with FarmLink IT or Salesforce consultants

 Manage Salesforce reporting calendar and provide schedule and reminders to staff for submitting their portions of grant report narratives

 Analyze and summarize data from Salesforce and DownHome regarding clients served, loans made, regional needs and opportunities for improvement

 Work with ED and Communications Director to support funder communications and build and maintain relationships with partners and funders

Grant and Program Management (~25%)

Manage programs and provide strategic guidance to teams and project managers in ways that promote the organization’s mission and culture. Develop efficient program management strategies and tactics to produce timely results and outcomes. Supervise and support three regional program coordinators to establish annual performance goals, track progress, and regularly report internally (staff and board) and externally (funders and partners) as needed.

 Work with each project lead to establish workplans, evaluation plans, deliverables and reporting timelines

 Present from time to time at workshops, events and conferences in collaboration with Regional Program Coordinators

 Support the Director of Lending in coordinating outreach, education and marketing for the loan program in each region

 Serve on the Management Team to collaboratively advance FarmLink’s fundraising, development and programmatic work

 Work with ED and Management Team on annual public policy priorities.

 Communicate advocacy opportunities and develop clear and compelling policy-related narratives


 Proven experience as a Program Manager or other non-profit management position

o 3+ years supervising multiple staff

o 3+ years managing programs and projects

o 5+ years experience in sustainable agriculture and/or rural development with deep understanding of farm business challenges, land access and financial issues

o Real estate transaction and land leasing experience is a plus

 5+ years paid non-profit experience in fundraising and thorough understanding of project/program management techniques and methods

 Excellent writing, editing, and verbal communications skills for diverse audiences

 Strong planning skills, including the ability to anticipate tasks, set priorities, meet deadlines and function smoothly under shifting priorities

 High-level computer literacy skills. Excellent knowledge of MS Office and Google applications, knowledge of Salesforce CRM is a strong advantage

 Strong team player who also works well independently

 Capacity to develop and maintain positive and productive relationships with funders, staff, and partners

 Knowledge of the philanthropic community

 BA/BS required; masters degree preferred

 Fluency in Spanish is a plus

California FarmLink offers a generous benefits package, including health insurance, retirement, and vacation. California FarmLink maintains a drug-free workplace and is an equal opportunity employer.

To Apply

Please email a resume and thoughtful cover letter explaining your interest in this position to No phone calls please.

Who We Are

California FarmLink is a statewide nonprofit whose mission is to link independent farmers and ranchers with the land and financing they need for a sustainable future. FarmLink is a Certified Community Development Financial Institution. For more info:

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Job Opportunity at Cloverleaf Farm

We have a part-time to full-time job available at the Cloverleaf Farm, a 5 acre organic fruit farm located between Davis and Dixon. We have two current farm partners - Katie Fyhrie and Emma Torbert - and one part-time employee, and are looking for one more person to join the team. The position will be 20 hours per week from March 1st until May 1st and 40 hours per week from May until September at $12/hr. We are looking for someone that is interested in farming as a career and would like to work towards becoming a full partner at the Cloverleaf Farm. The work will consist of fruit tree care (thinning, pruning), fruit picking, packing, and delivery, row crop planting and cultivation, and fruit preservation (jams, fruit leathers).  
Our goal at The Cloverleaf is to grow excellent fruit while having a positive impact on our soil, our environment, and our local community.  Our vision is to create a thriving orchard ecosystem burgeoning with insects, wildlife, and soil microorganisms that minimizes water and energy consumption, as well as other external inputs.  We believe in treating ourselves and our customers with care, and strive to explore innovative farming ideas, foster creativity and provide an educational forum for the community.  As The Cloverleaf continues to expand and diversify, we aim to develop new markets to further integrate the farm into our local food system.  We have lots of ideas and plenty of work to do - and we could use your help!

Anybody interested in the position please contact Emma and Katie at - please email us with a statement of your interest, skills and qualifications and attach your resume.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

New Land Listing in Yuba County

Yuba #2193
This 29 acre parcel is located in the heart of Loma Rica, a rural community in the Sierra Nevada foothills off Hwy 20 between Grass Valley and Marysville. The entire acreage is very usable with year round creek running through the property with open pastures, level to gentle slope and some oak trees. It is zoned rural residential allowing for crops and grazing but the frontage is now zoned mixed use commercial allowing anything from market stand to retail. Excellent top soil for an organic farm, it was the local dairy for decades and grew oats for feed. Browns Valley Irrigation district supplies pressurized irrigation water which we pump to a large pond and then irrigate from the pond. Irrigation system is in place and set up for further expansion. 40 x 60 older dairy barn on the property and we have equipment available for crop production. Two bedroom home on the property and will lease with the land or separate. We are looking to partner with a farmer and will consider long term lease or lease with purchase option. Organic farming preferred. This property has great curb appeal with an excellent location on a well traveled paved road that would be perfect for agritourism, U-pick farm, farm to fork dining.
Farmer-to-Farmer BreakfastFSA Loans & Insurance
Wednesday January 18th8 – 10 AM  UC Cooperative Extension office, Auburn.

Come get to know other farmers and ranchers in our area. Enjoy a chance to relax and talk with other agricultural producers about farming and ranching issues. Jesse Simoes of the Farm Service Agency in Elk Grove will give a presentation on their insurance and loan programs. Do you need financing for equipment? Land? Operating expenses? FSA loans may be an option. Have you lost trees or vines due to drought or disease? Do you need to replant? FSA programs might be able to help.

Buffet breakfast.  Cost is $10 per person, and reservations are required. Make your reservation at Sign-ups close January 16th.

Whole Farm Insurance Workshop: Tuesday, January 243-6 PM
Cypress Room in the Placer County CDRA Building, corner of  Bell Road and Richardson Drive, Auburn

There is a new program that can insure your entire farm revenue, be it crops or livestock, against natural disasters, fire, pest losses, etc. and may replace damaged trees or vines.
Come and hear about this program for Placer/Nevada from Catharine Anderson of the USDA Risk Management Agency. Get your questions answered by an insurance agent who deals with this kind of insurance.
See attached fact sheet for details on the program.

Workshop is free. Pizza and soft drinks will be provided. Register at:

Farm Business Planning: Scaling Up to Profitability
Thursday nights, 6-9 PMFebruary 2 to March 2, 2017 plus Saturday, February 11th, 10 AM-4 PM
UCCE, 11477 E Avenue, Auburn, CA

Thinking about growing your farm or ranch business? Or just increasing profitability? Wondering what it will cost you? Thinking about what you’ll need to do to grow or streamline your business to make it more profitable? Come to the Farm Business Planning course this year!
We will delve into analysis of your existing crops/species/products and what it will cost to grow or streamline your operation. In a supportive environment, with peer-to-peer feedback, we will help you decide what you need to do, how to do it profitably and how to mitigate the risks you will encounter. 

The course requires sales and expense records for a minimum of one year. You will also need labor and time estimates.
The course is limited to 8 operations so that the group can focus on each individual farm or ranch and help you build more profitable farms and ranches. There is homework for each session.
Cost is $50 per operation, up to 3 people may attend from an operation.

Apply online at Once you submit your application, you should hear back from us within two weeks.
For more information, contact Roger Ingram or Cindy Fake 

2017 Shepherding Series
January 12     Intro to Sheep Production                          
January 14     Intro to Sheep Husbandry Field Day       
March 4          Lambing on Pasture Field Day                 

Integrated Pest Management Workshops for Commercial Growers
Learn about pest management techniques and how to plan your pest management program. These workshops will give you tools and resources to manage pests on your farm.  Register at:

February 8     I. Integrated Pest Management Techniques
February 15   II.  Citrus Pest Management
February 22   III.  Deciduous Orchard Pest Management
March 1          IV. Vegetable Pest Management

Other February workshops include:
Feb 15th 7 AM: The popular Farmer-to-Farmer Breakfast at the Happy Apple Kitchen. Registration opens mid-January.
February 24th10 AM-4 PM Wholesale Connections: wholesale and direct-to-retail marketing workshop and Speed-dating with area buyers. More details coming.

Support for these programs comes from the USDA Farm Service Agency, the USDA Risk Management Agency and the Western Extension Risk Management Program.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

American Farmland Trust
West Coast Director of Development
Job Description

American Farmland Trust (AFT) is the nation’s leading nonprofit organization dedicated to saving America’s farm and ranchland, promoting sound farming practices, and keeping farmers on the land. Since its founding in 1980 by a group of farmers and citizens concerned about the rapid loss of farmland to development, AFT has helped save more than five million acres of farmland from development and led the way for the adoption of conservation practices on millions more. Additionally, AFT actively works to keep more farmers on the land by linking next generation farmers to farmland, championing women landowners and educating farmers on conservation techniques.
On the West Coast, AFT has worked for decades to combat urban sprawl and protect some of the most productive farmland in the world. AFT collaborates on large-scale initiatives that bring together farmers, policy leaders and community advocates to address the most pressing challenges facing the state's farms and ranches, including farmland loss, agricultural water supplies and climate resilience.
“No Farms, No Food.” This is a critical time for AFT, as saving enough farmland for food production is a defining challenge for this century, underscoring the urgency of AFT's mission. Equally critical is ensuring that there will be a next generation of farmers and ranchers to steward the land. AFT is recognized as bringing invaluable solutions to these issues and is well-positioned to dramatically increase support among people who care about their food, local farms, and the environment.

The Position:
American Farmland Trust seeks a Director of Development (“DoD-West”) for fundraising operations on the West Coast, particularly in California, our country’s leading farm state. Reporting to a Washington DC-based Vice President of Development and External Relations, the DoD-West will be responsible for the oversight, planning and implementation of a comprehensive development program for that region and will coordinate national outreach as assigned. Additionally, the DoD-West will secure gifts from individuals and other sources to support AFT’s priorities throughout the U.S.; work with the Vice President to establish fundraising goals; cultivate a select group of prospects (150+) working closely with the development and program team to steward gifts; and plan/execute selective prospect cultivation and stewardship events.  The person who fills this position will be responsible for meeting specific annual revenue goals and contributing to the overall achievement of the organization's revenue goals.
The ideal candidate will be an entrepreneurial professional who enjoys front-line relationship building, soliciting, developing and driving strategies with senior leadership, and demonstrating creativity and relationship-building savvy to make connections and secure in-person appointments.  The candidate must be able to articulate the case to support the vision/mission/goals of AFT for the purpose of securing major gifts and pledges. The DoD-West position requires significant travel with emphasis on numerous face to face donor meetings, particularly in northern California.
Primary Responsibilities 
Work with Vice President to lead Development team’s successful implementation of the major gifts plan.
          Implement programs/activities to identify, cultivate, solicit and steward donors at the major gift level.
          Oversee movement of donor/prospect visits, solicitation, and gift closure for other staff members, volunteers, AFT leadership and board members.
          Execute events and other fundraising activities that advance AFT’s relationship with donors/prospects.
          Prepare written documents in support of solicitation, cultivation and development events, including correspondence, strategic plans, invitations and reports. Develop highly tailored proposals.
          Coordinate an effective program for recognition, involvement and stewardship of donors.

Manage aggressive personal portfolio of prospects and donors.
          Design, develop, plan, oversee and evaluate individual donor/prospect identification, cultivation, solicitation, gift closure and recognition for assigned portfolio. Includes renewable gifts and new incremental revenue.
          Travel throughout assigned region and nationally as necessary to cultivate relationships with donors and prospects.
          Develop and execute ongoing strategy for qualifying potential donors and moving them to prospect status using tools such as small cultivation events, research and community networking.
          Conduct individualized responses to donor/prospect contacts with appropriate communications and reporting.
          Share information on planned giving opportunities with donors as appropriate.

A bachelor’s degree in a related field and 7+ years of relevant professional experience in major gift fundraising, with a demonstrated success in closing major and principal gifts.

The ideal candidate will have:
·         Expert knowledge in planned giving.
·         Proficiency in event planning and campaign management, or any equivalent combination of experience and/or education from which comparable knowledge, skills and abilities have been achieved.
·         Knowledge and related experience in direct mail, public relations, advertising or marketing.
·         Professional skill preparing and presenting proposals and case statements.
·         Proficiency in Raiser's Edge and Microsoft Office.
·         Expert skill with membership databases and moves management systems.
·         Working knowledge of prospect research methodologies, best practices and evolving trends in major and principal gifts philanthropy.
·         Team player with a commitment to the mission, philosophy and values of AFT.
·         Superior organizational skills; creative, proactive, and detail-oriented with a strong ability to prioritize.
·         Sound judgment in maintaining confidentiality of donor information.
·         Excellent oral, written, interpersonal, analytical and organizational skills.
·         Knowledge of tax laws that impact charitable giving.

For more information about the American Farmland Trust, visit

To Apply:
The American Farmland Trust has retained the services of Harris Rand Lusk to conduct this search. Inquiries, nominations, and applications may be directed in confidence to:

Debbie Farrell
Senior Director, Leadership and Development
Harris Rand Lusk
122 E. 42nd Street, Suite 3605
New York, NY  10168
Please include “AFT, West Coast DoD” in the subject line of the email.