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October 2, 2017

The Small Farms update summarizes announcements, resources, opportunities and upcoming events relevant to small farms. Please feel free to share this information in newsletters, email lists, etc. If you would like to submit an item for an upcoming issue,  please visit our new online form. Subscribe here.  Thank you again for your interest and support of small farms in New York.   

Anu Rangarajan,  Director, Cornell Small Farms Program
Small Farms Program Highlights
veteran, education, field
flower, market, produce
Save the Date for the Veterans in Ag Conference!
The Cornell Small Farms Program will be hosting a celebration of our state's farmer veterans in Syracuse on Nov 29th.  The day's program will include opening remarks from Commissioner Ball, a special announcement from the Farmer Veteran Coalition of New York, and networking and training sessions for both veterans and service providers. Join us in a celebration of our farmers-veterans and of all of you who serve military veterans and beginning farmers in New York State.
Check out the event here.
Upcoming Online Course - BF 205: Developing and Using a Marketing Plan

Most people are drawn to the production side of small-scale agriculture and then are "stuck" with the marketing. This course introduces effective techniques to reduce the amount of time and money that marketing activities draw from the farm while guiding management towards income and lifestyle goals.  Throughout this series of webinars, you will develop components of your marketing plan, design a marketing strategy, and improve marketing labor efficiency. Learn more and register here.
New!  Cost of Production Workbook for Organic Farmers
Over the past two years, three NOFA chapters- Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts- worked with 30 organic vegetable farmers to determine the cost of production of vegetable crops commonly grown in the Northeast.  The results from participating farms were aggregated on a per acre basis into five crop-specific fact sheets that present key metrics such as net income, average price/case, cultivation hours/acre, wash and pack hours/acre, and many other data points related to the production of winter squash, potatoes, onions, head lettuce, and carrots.  The cost of production workbook and the factsheets generated by this project can help farmers make informed decisions on crop mix, markets, and production systems that maximize their profitability.  Interested farmers can access these resources and request technical assistance by visiting www.nofavt.org/cost-of-production or contacting Jen Miller, NOFA-VT Farmer Services Coordinator, jen@nofavt.org
Calling all Oyster Mushroom Producers!
Are you currently growing oyster mushrooms for sale? Or thinking about commercial mushrooms production? Please consider taking this survey! 
We are collecting data on farmers interested in growing oyster mushrooms. This is for  a research and education SARE grant being applied for in 2017 with Fungi Ally and the Cornell Small Farms Program. This survey is for those currently growing Oyster Mushrooms commercially, or seriously considering starting in the next two years and located in Connecticut,  Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Please complete the survey hereIt will close on October 5th.
Food Safety Survey
How can we help you with food safety? The Local Food Safety Collaborative, which provides specialized training, education, and outreach to local farmers and processors, wants to know. Take this needs assessment survey before October 31 to help LFSC enhance fundamental food safety knowledge and support local farmers and processors to comply with applicable Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) regulations. The  survey is voluntary and will take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete. After completing the survey, you may elect to enter your personal information to be entered in a raffle for one of twenty $100.00 gift cards!
Connecting Health Insurance and Agricultural Viability Webinar
October 10, 1:30-3:30pm. Online.
Health, access to care and health insurance affect the vitality of agricultural enterprises and farm and ranch families, according to results from a national research project funded by the USDA. Designed for Extension, tax, loan, health and other agricultural advisors, this webinar will provide an overview of the research findings and introduce some practical tools that educators and advisors can use to help farmers and ranchers make informed decisions for their businesses and households.  Participants will leave the webinar with:
  • An understanding of the intersection of health and agricultural business viability, grounded in 2016-2017 national research findings;
  • Tools they can use in their work farmers, including worksheets, videos and other informational resources.
  • Questions to ask farmers and ranchers to help incorporate health costs into farm enterprise and risk management planning.
For more information, please email  Katlyn.Morris@uvm.edu
Permaculture Workshop
October 14, 1-4pm. 
Cross Island Farm's Edible Forest Garden, 44301 Cross Island Road, Wellesley Island, NY 13640

Take a guided walk through a perennial planting of over 300 edible cultivars at Cross Island Farm's Edible Forest Garden. Learn about actualized permaculture practices and how to landscape your yard with edibles. Taste a variety of uncommon greens, berries, flowers, and herbs. Bring home a potted plant for your own garden. For more information, contact Dani Baker at Cross Island Farms at (315) 482-3663 or Adirondack Harvest at (518) 962-4810.
Grrls Meat Camp Cut & Cook Workshop
October 17-19. Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

This October, Grrls Meat Camp is teaming up with Cornell Cooperative Extension, Harvest NY for their Grrls Meat
Camp Cut & Cook workshop. Let's come together in small groups build a strong circle of like-spirited grrls, while
sharpening our butchery, cooking, and business skills. Come have fun and earn your badges! For the workshop itinerary and more details, click hereVisit the Grrls Meat Camp website to sign up!
Farm Insurance Basics Meeting
October 19, 7pm. CCE Albany County, 24 Martin Road, Voorheesville, NY 12186

Each day, farmers face various risks when operating and managing their farms. To help provide protection against some of those risks, farmers can purchase insurance. An evening workshop will be held on Thursday, October 19 to help participants become better consumers of insurance. Insurance Agent Michael Bruce will be discussing how you can develop an insurance package that will provide you protection at a price you can afford. From attending this workshop, you will g ain important knowledge on what types of insurance policies you may need to help protect your business, a ppreciate the need to communicate with your insurance agent as your business grows or changes, and b e better prepared in case you do need to use one part of your insurance package.  The cost to attend the workshop is $5.00 per person. Register online here, and/or contact Tove Ford at  cce-caahp@cornell.edu  or  518-765-3518 for more information.
MANY MORE EVENTS at our Statewide Events Calendar.
Career, Etc. Opportunities
ARE YOU HIRING? If you have a job opportunity that you would like to submit to the Small Farms Bi-Monthly Update, please write a detailed 125 word description and submit it here !
Funding Opportunities
Tompkins County Microgrants
The Ithaca/Tompkins County Convention & Visitors Bureau (a division of the Tompkins County  Chamber of Commerce) is pleased to announce that they have received funding to provide  "microgrants" (small grants of up to $500 per project) directly to farms, food and beverage  producers, farm stands, and farmers markets to expand agriculinary tourism opportunity in  Tompkins County. Small, reimbursable grants of up to $500 each are available to businesses  or nonprofits (farm or food-related) in Tompkins County with a project that may increase agriculinary tourism in Tompkins County.  The microgrants will achieve the specific goals of the Agriculinary Tourism program to increase  the number of farms, markets, and properties considered "visitor ready," and to increase visitor  access or add new visitor experiences.  The deadline for applications is 5pm on Wednesday, November 1st.  For more information or to receive a copy of the 2017 Microgrant Application, please contact
the Agriculinary Tourism Coordinator, Kina Viola at kina@visitithaca.com.
NYFVI Competitive Grants Program
The New York Farm Viability Institute (NYFVI) is seeking proposals for its competitive grant program. New this year, the organization is encouraging proposals that will accelerate the adoption of technology and help farmers make better use of data on their farm.  The projects may range from improving operational practices through applied research and education to developing new routes to market. Proposals up to $150,000 will be accepted. Awards will be announced in the spring with funding available to begin work immediately.  Proposals are welcome from any individual, business or organization seeking to build and share knowledge to improve the economic viability of New York's farmers. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to read the full request for proposals. All applications must be submitted online. For questions or help with proposal development, applicants are encouraged to email or call NYFVI staff. All information can be found here. Applications are due by November 13, 2017.
Community Food Projects Competitive Grant Program
The Community Food Projects Competitive Grant Program (CFPCGP) has existed since 1996 as a program to fight food insecurity through developing community food projects that help promote the self-sufficiency of low-income communities. Preferred projects develop linkages between two or more sectors of the food system, support the development of entrepreneurial projects, develop innovative linkages between the for-profit and nonprofit food sectors, encourage long-term planning activities and multisystem, and build long-term capacity of communities to address the food and agricultural problems of communities, such as food policy councils and food planning associations. Click here to see if you are eligible and to apply. The deadline for applications is December 4, 2017.
Latest Resources
Brambles: Organic Production
This publication focuses on organic practices for blackberry and raspberry production. It discusses cultural considerations including site selection, establishment, pruning and trellising, and it introduces organic practices for fertility, weed, disease, and insect management. It also provides new information on greenhouse production and season extension and addresses economics and marketing. The publication is available online for free here.
Climate Smart Farming Video
The newest video added to the Cornell Institute for Climate Smart Solutions library 
features Jennifer Phillips of Gansvoort Farm in Germantown, NY. Jennifer discusses how her farm responds to extreme weather and changes in heat and cold stress and disease. Gansvoort Farm specializes in lamb production, a sector of livestock farming vulnerable to unpredictable weather. Check out the video here to learn how this 100% grass-fed farm in the Hudson Valley has responded to the changing climate.
CCE-Tompkins Profitable Meat Marketing Articles
Matt LeRoux, an  Ag. Marketing Specialist at C ornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County, is writing a series of four articles to teach improved marketing skills to farms selling meat.  The articles are in support of the online Cornell Meat Price & Yield Calculator web tool. This tool is free for farmers in PA, NY, and MD, and helps account for costs and then set prices for each cut of meat, ensuring the farm covers costs and includes a profit. Farmers are encouraged to develop pricing for each market channel they use. Matt will expand on the calculator in the third and fourth articles of the series. Access the first article here.
Get Connected!
Need personal help?
Sometimes local questions are best answered by your neighborhood Cornell Cooperative Extension agent. Check out our county-by-county listing of small farm agents here. You can also get to know our Cornell Small Farms Program  staff, or contact us. Just starting to farm? We have an extensive resources available in the " Plan Your Farm" section of our website.
SFP Small Farms Program Logo
The Small Farms Update is intended as a resource for farmers and agricultural service providers in New York and the Northeast, and is provided to you by Cornell Small Farms Program. We envision a future where diverse and vibrant urban and rural farms build human capacity, revitalize communities, supply regional food systems, and foster ecological resilience in a changing world. The Cornell Small Farm Program is a joint effort of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Cornell Cooperative Extension.