This is a special email blast to our readers. I have three important topics to touch upon:
- The 2012 Ag Census,
- SEMAP's Farmers & Eaters Survey, and
- The 6th Annual Agriculture & Food Conference of Southeastern Massachusetts.
Today is the final day to submit Ag Census responses! I cannot begin to explain the importance of this data. If you are a farmer I implore you to submit your information.
SEMAP is also collecting data for our region. We have 106 responses already - which is fantastic, but we need to hear from as many of you as possible to maximize the relevance of our data. Over 1000 of you regularly read our emails...so I know we can do better than 106! Bristol County has been our largest response pool...
So far, we have heard that we should not change our name, we should be actively engaged in legislative advocacy, and convene the community around local food issues - to name a few of the important questions we ask in this survey. The full results and SEMAP's new strategic plan will be revealed at the end of June 2013.
Please take 5 to 10 minutes of your time and complete SEMAP's 2013 Farmers & Eaters Survey.
Probably our best way to respond to educational and technical assistance requests, as well as to schedule specific speakers and educators is SEMAP's Ag & Food Conference. This is our 6th year running a conference but only our 3rd year at an expanded level - something for everyone - Farmers, Families, and Foodies! Several of our survey questions are on the conference - so please give us your feedback.
However, this year's conference is going to be pretty amazing! Click here for our 18 workshop descriptions. We will open the conference with our own Department of Agricultural Resources Commissioner, Greg Watson. Following the Commissioner is a presentation by the Southeastern Massachusetts Meat Producers Association (SEMMPA) and the results of their survey of meat production and processing needs in our region - I can tell you this is going to be some incredibly illuminating data.
Circling our opening room is our Exhibitors Ring, which is nearly full. We are fortunate to have The Worm Ladies; Fedco Seeds; and at The Trustees of Reservations booth, where one-on-one leasing consults will be available. There is still time to sign up as an exhibitor and sponsor of the conference.
Of course, one of our highlights is the food itself and our local lunch. Rosa Galeno will be dazzling us with a menu for all the senses. Continue reading to view the menu.
I hope to see you on February 23rd at Bristol County Agricultural High School for our 6th Annual Ag & Food Conference.
SEMAP Executive Director