Microloan Options for Small Farms ~ Recap from the CA Small Farm Conference

CA SFC

Last week the 27th California Small Farm Conference took place in Rohnert Park, about an hour north of San Francisco. You never know exactly what to expect at this annual event, since it moves across California each year and offers ever-changing workshops designed with the help of each region’s local agriculture organizations.

This year the Workshops were organized into some hot topics (Emerging Issues, Production, Farm Management, Marketing, and Farmers Markets), and were chock full of some really valuable, practical content. It was a welcome problem not being able to decide which ones to attend!

We co-hosted one session on Crowd-Sourcing & Community Sharing, where FarmsReach, The Farmers Guild, CropMobster and Farm Hack Davis joined forces for an interesting discussion on the power of collaboration within the food and farming community.

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Community Picks: CropMobster, AgLocal, and PastureScout

These folks are all about supporting farmers, and they’re taking new approaches to solve some real issues for the farming and ranching community.  We’ve met with all of them the past few months, and we want to share the great work they’re doing!

Screen Shot 2013-05-31 at 3.40.54 PMCropMobster transforms what might be considered food waste, into value. Tons of produce not fit for the produce shelves in a supermarket are often left in the fields to rot. CropMobster is an online platform giving farmers the opportunity to offer this surplus and ‘seconds’ to those in their community who need it. We’re particularly moved by how this organization enables communities to take an active role in supporting their local food system. Watch the video where founder Nick Papadopolous explains how CropMobster works and see how you could use their services selling or donating product, or accessing some affordable bounty.

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North Coast Farmers Guild’s Eats & Ideas

GrowKitchen, kitchenIMG_1085

There’s probably no better way to learn more about your food than to meet the farmers who grow it and share a meal with them. The North Coast Young Farmer’s Guild met for their fourth monthly gathering at GrowKitchen in Sebastopol. The guild isn’t confined to just farmers. They welcome “ranchers, milkmaids, food artisans, chefs, butchers and anyone else with a vested interest in the next generation” of good and healthy eats.

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