Equipping farmers to build resilient farms and communities.
Fruit and vegetable farmer meet-ups are in full swing. Above, attendees of the Feb. 18 gathering, hosted by Barb Kraus, of Decorah, Iowa, enjoy indoor discussion as well as an outdoor field tour.

If you couldn't attend this one, don't worry -- meet-ups are scheduled weekly on Fridays through March 25. The gatherings bring vegetable, fruit, flower and orchard crop farmers together to connect, build relationships and share plans and ideas with others in preparation for the coming growing season.
There are many reasons why you might need a little extra help. This program is for you if:

  • Your production is in place and you want to take your business performance to the next level.

  • Your business’ market position and profitability are eroding and you know you need to adapt.

  • Your farm is established and hasn’t reached profitability, and you know things need to change.

  • You need to raise money and know you need to get prepared to be successful.

In this farminar, Paul Mugge and Tim Youngquist shared their experiences with integrating conservation practices into their farms. Thank you to everyone who tuned in on Tuesday!

Friday, March 4 | Noon - 1 p.m. CST

Grain drills, combines, swathers – oh my! For those old and new to small-grain production, having reliable equipment (and using it correctly) can take some stress out of the growing season.
On March 4, we’ll hear from Tracy Skaar, Doug Alert and Margaret Smith via Zoom as they discuss what machinery they use for seeding, harvesting, adding fertility and more. Click to learn how to join.
March 1 | 7-8:30 p.m.

Ready to improve your marketing and sales efforts?

Amanda Severson will speak about prioritizing multiple distribution channels – specifically, marketing for wholesale, direct-to-consumer and farmers market distribution. She will also focus on social media presence and the role it has in managing these relationships.

Friday, March 4 | 9-11 a.m. | Mt. Vernon, Iowa

Donna Warhover and Laura Krouse will host this meet-up at Donna's home in Mt. Vernon, Iowa.

These gatherings offer a chance to meet other fruit and vegetable farmers in your area, discuss plans and build community.
Doing things the way they have always been done can have a bad reputation, but it doesn’t always ring true. “Back 80 years ago, it was a common practice to frost-seed red clover into wheat,” says Roger Wenning of Decatur County, Indiana. 

In our February 2022 shared learning call, Roger shared his experience bringing red clover back to the farm and how it has fit into his system over the last decade.

Gifting grain directly to Practical Farmers supports our work to equip farmers to build resilient farms and communities, and also provides you with more significant tax savings.

Contributing grain lets you avoid the sale of the commodity as income, while the production costs may still be deductible. Reducing taxable income may provide advantages such as minimizing or eliminating your self-employment tax and reducing your adjusted gross income.

As one of their member benefits, PFI members are able to join the conversation in any of our five email discussion groups. Recent posts have included advice on frost-seeding brassica cover crops, selling new produce packaging, job and internship opportunities and more.

Become a PFI member to access the discussion lists.

Already a member? Email debra@practicalfarmers.org with the list(s) you'd like to join.
Members in the News
Arlyn and Sue Kauffman of Weldon, IA, were featured on Poultryproducer.com: Green Ridge Family Farm Recognized for Environmental Excellence by USPOULTRY

T.D. Holub of Coggon, IA, was featured in The Gazette: Black Farmers of Iowa Plowing Different Path

Nick Wallace of Keystone, IA, was featured on Techcrunch.com: 99 Counties taps regenerative agriculture trend for meat marketplace

Jackie Armstrong of St. Ansgar, IA, and Jean Eells of Webster City, IA, were featured in No-Till Farmer: Landowners Share Tips For Conservation Ag Discussion
PFI in the News
Practical Farmers of Iowa was mentioned in Wallaces Farmer: Got oats? If not, you might want to add this crop to your rotation
Have you been featured in the media? Tell us when and where to find a link to the article, and we'll feature you in a future issue of Practical News.