Equipping farmers to build resilient farms and communities.

How are you adjusting to make your farm plan work at this time? How has this impacted your ability to start farming? Join us on Thursday, May 21 at 1:00 p.m for a virtual beginning farmer meet-up.

Join other beginning and aspiring farmers to take a quick break from farm work and virtually gather to socialize! Our purpose is to create a supportive, upbeat space for farmers to share and connect during these times of uncertainty.
Please join us during a one hour virtual meet-up to talk about the ongoing changes and challenges specific to your farms and markets due to COVID-19.

Our intention is to provide a place for producers to share their insights, struggles, ideas and strategies to manage current and anticipated changes related to consumer demand, market access, labor, and enhanced measures for food safety.
Are you looking to get paid, on-the-job training with experienced farmers in Iowa? The Labor4Learning program is designed for beginning farmers seeking employment and additional training in farm management and production skills. Practical Farmers of Iowa “trainer” farmers will be hiring in the early part of the new year for the upcoming growing season. Browse the list below for training opportunities near you.
Donna Warhover of Morning Glory LLC in Mt. Vernon is eager to hire a farm assistant who is motivated to learn about a diverse vegetable farm, managing a CSA and connecting to the local foods movement.
"Frantzen Farm is a diversified and energetic organic crop and livestock (beef and pork) farm on 300 acres. We are in need of additional help, but could use the additional help in an educational forum such as Labor4Learning."
- James Frantzen, New Hampton, IA
Check out these resources for beginning farmers
We have recently updated our collection of business, financial, production and technical assistance resources to help aspiring and beginning farmers further their business goals. You can access them by clicking on the icons below.

We will continue to build this list and add new resources as they are available. If you see any resources missing that you find helpful, please share them with us. You can send them to Greg Padget at greg@practicalfarmers.org .

The Regional Food System Partnerships (RFSP) program supports partnerships that connect public and private resources to plan and develop local or regional food systems. Effort is focused on building and strengthening local or regional food economy viability and resilience by alleviating unnecessary administrative and technical barriers for participating partners. Request for Applications has been extended until May 26, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time.

The Iowa Sheep Industry Association is offering an online educational webinar series throughout 2020! Take this opportunity to learn about various topics related to sheep production, beginning with selecting breeds and breeding sheep and progressing through flock nutrition, health, marketing and business planning. Webinars will be held every other month and each session will be recorded and archived for future access. While geared towards helping novice sheep producers, this series will surely provide some new ways of thinking for even the most seasoned shepherds.  Register here.

The National Young Farmers Coalition has released a Guide to Direct Sales Software Platforms. The free eight-page PDF publication includes an overview chart and detailed listings comparing farm-specific software platforms that support direct-to-consumer sales. The publication also contains links to related educational resources.

Looking for a tenant to lease approximately 3-acres of land that has been used to grow a variety of market garden vegetables. Includes a wash station and cooler set up for a cooling system. Deer fence may be available. Water for washing vegetables is available. 
Upcoming PFI Events
May 15:  Meet-Up -  Strange Times
1 p.m. | Online

May 21: Meet-Up - Beginning Farmer
1 p.m. | Online

May 22:   Meet-Up -  Strange Times
1 p.m. | Online
May 29:   Meet-Up -  Strange Times
1 p.m. | Online

June 5:   Meet-Up -  Strange Times
1 p.m. | Online

June 12:   Meet-Up -  Strange Times
1 p.m. | Online
Labor4Learning helps beginning farmers get paid on-the-job training with experienced farmers, and pays experienced farmers for their time and effort.

Savings Incentive Program
Savings Incentive Program is a 2-year program that pairs beginning and aspiring farmers with experienced farmer mentors; provides targeted learning and peer networking opportunities; offers business planning support and guidance. All this while you save money that we match dollar for dollar, up to $2,400, to use toward the purchase of a farm asset.

Find A Farmer
Find A Farmer allows for a comfortable place to start anonymous conversations with land-seekers or landowners. Search for users in a particular area that fit your specifications and begin the discussion.

Find A Farmer is FREE and available for anyone with internet access! No membership is required.
Looking for more?
Greg Padget
Next Generation Director
(515) 232-5661