Our webinar series brings together experts in the field to share their knowledge and experience with farm incubator projects across the country…
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Webinar 1 - Farm Incubators 101; Webinar 2 - Project Administration and Management; Webinar 3 - Curriculum Development; Webinar 4 - Marketing Support; Webinar 5 - Land and Site Management; Webinar 6 - Transitioning Farmers off the Incubator; Webinar 7 - Advocacy for Incubators; Webinar 8 - AgSquared; Webinar 9 - Metrics and Evaluation; Webinar 10 - Teaching Financial Literacy to Farmers; Webinar 11 - Recordkeeping for Incubator Farms and Farmers; NIFTI Webinar #12 - Incubator Land Management and Teaching Ecological Land Use; NIFTI Webinar #13: Incubator Policies and Guidelines; NIFTI Webinar #14: Cooperative Farming for Incubator Farm Graduates; NIFTI Webinar #15: Mainstreaming Beginning Farmers in Local Food Policy: NIFTI Webinar #16: Cooperative Farming Best Practices and Challenges; NIFTI Webinar #17: Ways for Incubator Farms to Support Co-op Development; NIFTI Webinar #18: Ag Employment Law and Your Farm; NIFTI Webinar #19: A Conversation with Lowcountry Local First NIFTI; NIFTI Webinar #20: Employment Law for Your Farm Q & A Webinar; NIFTI Webinar #21: Experimenting with App-Based Recordkeeping; NIFTI Webinar #22: Discussion about COVID-19 Resources for Incubator and Apprenticeship Training Programs
This webinar covers: (a) the basic framework of our new National Farm Incubator Technical Assistance Initiative and how it can help you achieve the programmatic goals of your farm incubator project; (b) the reasons for starting a farm incubator and common strategies for meeting diverse farmer training and support goals; (c) presentations on how veteran incubator projects (New Entry, as well as our project partners ALBA, the Intervale Center, the New Farmer Develop Project, and the Big River Farms Training Program) operate successful and diverse programs; and (d) a 15 minute Q&A session regarding specific program operational practices.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on the basics of farm incubator project administration. Partners from the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA), the New Farmer Development Project (NFDP), the International Rescue Committee's New Roots program, and the New Entry Sustainable Farming Project (New Entry) will delve deeply into topics such as fundraising, operations and staffing, program development, and how to track and evaluate your successes over time.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on developing appropriate curricula for beginning farmer training programs. Partners from the Minnesota Food Association (MNFA) Big River Farms Program, the New American Sustainable Agriculture Project (NASAP), and the New Entry Sustainable Farming Project (New Entry) will discuss different learning modules of relevance to beginning farmers (business planning, field training topics, etc.) as well as provide examples of lesson plans, exercises and other teaching tools. We will also address teaching to populations with language barriers and how curricula fit into the broader incubator farm program structure.
Slideshow: NIFTI Webinar #3- Curriculum Development
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on integrating marketing support and cooperative marketing on incubator farms. Partners from the Intervale Center, the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA) and the New Entry Sustainable Farming Project (New Entry) will discuss avenues for marketing incubator farmer's products, cooperative storage, distribution, and marketing infrastructure (food hubs), maintaining product quality, and food safety concerns.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on managing shared infrastructure and incubator sites. Partners from the Intervale Center, the New American Sustainable Agriculture Project, the International Rescue Committee and the Minnesota Food Association will discuss a wide variety of topics including leasing land, soil fertility management, infrastructure development, urban farming initiatives and general site maintenance (budget, staffing, etc.).
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on strategies for transitioning farmers successfully onto their own farm operations. Partners from the Intervale Center, the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA) and the New Entry Sustainable Farming Project (New Entry) will discuss farmland matching programs, helping farmers access capital, and the structure and challenges of continued support for graduates.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) for a webinar on strategies for engaging farmers in federal and local advocacy efforts related to beginning farmer issues. Hear from the Land Stewardship Project, the National Young Farmers Coalition, and the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition about how your program can make sure beginning farmers voices are heard loud and clear in the upcoming Farm Bill debates.
AgSquared and the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) invite you to participate in a webinar for beginning farmer educators. This is a great opportunity to learn about how AgSquared can help the farmers you work with develop their initial crop plans and keep better farm records, as well as the resources AgSquared can provide for teaching record-keeping in your beginning farmer training or farm incubator programs.
AgSquared (www.agsquared.com) is an online software package designed to help small farmers with their crop planning, farm management, and record keeping. AgSquared is based on the premise that better plans, streamlined management, and more complete records can help make farms more productive, more profitable, and more sustainable.
This webinar will focus on best practices for developing evaluation protocols for your program. Learn from the experts on how to gather data and report on outcomes. We will have presentations from: Jessie Schmidt at the University of Vermont on the “Farmer Assessment Web” tool; Maggie Donin at the Intervale Center; the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association; and NIFTI will launch its brand new resource, “The Metrics and Evaluation Toolkit for Farm Incubators”.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training Initiative (NIFTI) to learn tools and best practices for teaching financial literacy to beginning farmers. Our presenters are Julia Shanks - Julia Shanks Food Consulting, and Gary Matteson – Farm Credit Council. The webinar will focus on practical strategies for teaching farmers how to manage the financial health of their businesses.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training (NIFTI) Initiative for a webinar on record keeping for incubator farms and farmers. Learn what other projects are tracking and how they're tracking it, and get insight into why gathering data on the farm is somehow never as easy as we think it'll be. We will have presentations from Stephen Paddock at the Vermont Small Business Development Center and Nikki Seibert at Lowcountry Local First.
Join the National Incubator Farm Training (NIFTI) Initiative for a webinar on Incubator Land Management and Teaching Ecological Land Use. Learn how other projects manage soil fertility and implement long-term land use plans. This webinar approaches land management from three distinct perspectives: whole-farm multigrower management, institutional sustainability, and practical implementation of a time-tested approach. Featured presentations from Nathan Harkleroad at ALBA, Peter Walker at Chatham University and Eero Ruutilla at New Entry Sustainable Farming Project
Join NIFTI in a conversation with leaders from three Incubator Farm Projects from across the country about the policies and guidelines that define, direct and reinforce their work. Topics to be covered include:
Pre-requisites for Participation
Land Assignment and Expansion
Farmer vs Program Responsibilities
Timeframe for Incubation
Transitioning Farmers Off of the Incubator
Robin Chanin, Executive Director, Global Growers Network
Maggie Donin, Beginning Farmer Specialist, The Intervale Center
Katie Kubovcik, Training Program Manager, Minnesota Food Association
This webinar explores cooperative farming as a next-step for Incubator Farm Project participants. Lowcountry Local First shares their approach to helping their farmers consider the possibility of a cooperative farming venture. Roots Memphis discusses how cooperative farming shapes their program structure, and Thomas Beckett of Carolina Common Enterprise provides an overview of cooperative farming and highlights key considerations for moving towards cooperative farming.
Nikki Seibert Kelley, Director of Sustainable Agriculture, Lowcountry Local First
Wes Riddle, Founder and Director, Roots Memphis
Thomas Beckett, co-Executive Director, Carolina Common Enterprise
This webinar explores how local food policy efforts can raise awareness of the needs of beginning farmers and create conditions favorable to help new farm businesses succeed. Advocates from three organizations will describe their recent initiatives and successes to support beginning farmers as well as provide tips on how to make the next generation of farmers and ranchers a policy priority.
Eric Sannerud & Matthew Fitzgerald , Minnesota Young Farmers Coalition
Annie Heuscher , Program Director, Food and Agriculture Coalition of Missoula County
Sydney Daigle & Kim Rush Lynch, Prince George’s County Food Equity Council
Presentation slides are available here.
February 2, 2018. An informational webinar and discussion on Cooperative Farming with presenter Mai Nguyen, Cooperative Development Associate from California Center for Cooperative Development. Mai discusses ways in which farmers can work collectively within and beyond the incubator setting using the worker cooperative, equipment-sharing cooperative, and purchasing cooperative models. Vanessa Bransburg, Director of Startup Initiatives at the Democracy at Work Institute shares which resources are available to those interested in moving forward with exploring cooperative farming beyond the webinar.
March 9, 2018: In this webinar, Luis Sierra, Assistant Director for CCCD, takes us a step deeper in understanding how incubator farms can support cooperative development. Luis responds to questions from Part I by reviewing the ways that Farm Educators and Incubators can support their clients/constituencies’ efforts to grow or market as a cooperative. The webinar examines issues that incubators need to be aware of when they decide to support a group’s interest in starting a cooperative and strategic choices of how to provide the support. The webinar reviews and describes how agricultural cooperatives started through a partnership between growers and non-profit organization, examines participant assumptions about cooperatives and cooperation, and how this impacts coop development process, what the essentials are of what participants should learn about cooperatives, what a cooperative development timeline looks like, and how to find and work with a Cooperative Development Specialist.
Presenter: Beth O’Neal, Conn Kavanaugh
Webinar presented by Beth O’Neal, an employment law attorney and partner at Conn Kavanaugh in Boston.
NIFTI Webinar #19: A Conversation with Lowcountry Local First and the Responsive Evolution of an Incubator and Apprenticeship Program
5.11.2018; Presenter: Brian Wheat, Lowcountry Local First
Join us for a conversation with Brian Wheat from Lowcountry Local First (https://lowcountrylocalfirst.org/). Their Good Farming initiative supports sustainable agriculture and is designed to grow and connect the local food system by training new farmers, supporting existing farm businesses and educating consumers. Additionally, they provide consulting services for private companies, municipal government, and anchor institutions to cultivate local farms and fill gaps in economic development activities. Lowcountry Local First has transitioned their farmer training program from an incubator farm model to an apprenticeship model that incorporates apprenticeships with local food businesses as well as farms, providing pathways to careers in food throughout the value chain. Learn about this transformation and participate in the discussion to see how their transition and lessons learned might be applicable to your farmer training program.
5.31.2018; Presenter: Beth O’Neal, Conn Kavanaugh
Please join New Entry Sustainable Food Project and the Legal Food Hub for Employment Law for the Farm: Q & A Webinar. As the farming season begins, do you have last minute questions about the legal implications of your farm apprentice program? Do you have questions about the agricultural exemption from minimum wage? Wondering whether you need to worry about overtime or what records you need to keep about your farm employees this summer? Join our webinar to ask your employment law questions to a leading expert in Massachusetts. Beth O’Neal, an employment law attorney and partner at Conn Kavanaugh in Boston, will answer your questions.
NIFTI Webinar #21: Experimenting with App-Based Recordkeeping
4.16.2020; Presenters: Laura MiraFuentes, Big River Farms; Rodrigo Cala, Cala Farms, Minnesota; Mike Gold, AgSquared.
Big River Farms and AgSquared partnered to create a series of new app-based record-keeping tools to help farmers of color, immigrant farmers, and other beginning growers keep the records needed for organic certification and to better understand their farm businesses. Learn about Big River Farms' experience in adopting AgSquared from both a farmer and incubator staff perspective on developing and interfacing with the app over the 2019 growing season, including challenges and lessons learned. Then, learn from an AgSquared app developer the basics of how to use the app, tips for training farmers, and how to sign up for free subscriptions for your farmer community! This project is funded by a Conservation Innovation Grant from NRCS, and specifically aims to help farmers make records more useful, regardless of language spoken or whether or not they have reliable computer access. The project also aims to provide a new tool for incubator farms and other farmer service providers to teach effective record-keeping and to more easily communicate with farmers on the incubator farm regarding records kept, pest and disease monitoring and control, and other data.
NIFTI Webinar #22: Discussion about COVID-19 Resources for Incubator and Apprenticeship Training Programs
6.19.2020; Presenters: Leah Ricci, Quivira Coalition; Rachel Armstrong, Farm Commons
Link to Zoom Recording here.
The Ag Apprenticeship Learning Network, NIFTI, Quivira Coalition, and New Entry Sustainable Farming Project are facilitating a space for agricultural apprenticeship and farm incubator programs to share best practices related to COVID-19 policies and procedures for program participants. We discussed what changes have programs made in response to COVID-19? How are programs ensuring that participants stay safe? What tools or resources have you put together to communicate new policies or the many federal and other support resources that are available? Resources and best practices were compiled and then shared with participants after the discussion.