The Vine - April 2022
Photo at Hornstra Farms in Norwell
Dear Friends,

Spring is here! With warmth in the air and seedlings in the ground, its fast becoming our favorite time of year - the growing season. Soon, the landscape will be covered in beautiful, colorful and delicious fruits and vegetables, as our farmers put together another great year of local food.

This means its time to think about how to attract customers to your farm, market, or store this summer, and what better way than through our Local Food Guide! While we are getting closer to our print and distribution dates, there's still some time to update your listing if you haven't done so yet.

More details on listings and advertising can be found in this month's newsletter, as well as some other great information for farmer and buyers. A slew of grants for farmers have opened up recently, both through the state and federal government, and SEMAP is happy to help through the grant process as needed. You'll also find information on farm advocacy and skill trainings, early Spring events and offers from some of our local farms, and more!

As always, if you have something you want SEMAP to share either through our newsletter or on social media, feel free to reach out. We are always looking for ways to support your business, and look forward to seeing you out in the field this year.

With gratitude,
Karen Schwalbe
Executive Director
Last Call For Updates to Local Food Guide Listings!
The 2022 Local Food Guide is coming together quickly as we near our printing deadline. This extensive list of farms and food business will spread far across our region, reaching countless potential customers. You don't want to miss out, so make sure your listing is up to date today! The guide is a great resource for businesses and consumers, including detailed listings for farm stands and farmers markets, seafood and fisheries, restaurants, value-added producers and many more!

There is also additional space available for advertising, if you want to get extra attention on your business! Full details on different options are available at our website.
SEMAP, Langwater Farm Host USDA Undersecretary for Farm Visit
In February, SEMAP and Langwater Farm in Easton hosted USDA Undersecretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, Jenny Lester Moffitt, for a visit and conversation about food incentive programs in Massachusetts. We were also joined by Rebecca Davidson, Farmers Market Nutrition Program Coordinator at MDAR.

Throughout the afternoon, we walked from greenhouse to greenhouse under the shadow of the still-under-construction farm store, talking about the impacts of food incentive programs like SNAP/HIP both for consumers and for farmers.

Read our latest blogpost for more about our visit, and hear from Kevin and Kate from Langwater, plus some of our other farmers and service providers, about the value of these programs!
Current Food Producer Grant Opportunities
'Tis the season for lots of open food producer grants! Take a look at a few of the currently open grant, reimbursement, and award programs below, then check out a complete list on our webpage.

  • Multi-Business Agritourism Grant: To elevate dairy businesses through agritourism across the Northeast, by improving awareness, access, and consumption of regionally-produced dairy. Please note that projects that benefit a single farm or brand are ineligible.
  • Deadline: April 7th

  • Specialty Crop Block Grant: For the enhancement of the competitiveness and production of specialty crop industries. Please note that projects that benefit a single farm or brand are ineligible.
  • Deadline: April 8th

  • Value-Added Producer Grant: For producers, cooperatives, and producer groups to generate new value-added products and create & expand channels to market these products.
  • Deadline: April 25th

  • Farm Viability Enhancement Program (FVEP): To assist established farms in finding strategies to increase the viability of their farm business, including through capital improvements.
  • Deadline: April 26th
News For Farmers and
Food Professionals
Opportunity to Share Climate Impacts on Agriculture
Two public hearings on the impacts of climate change on natural and working lands will be held on Thursday April 14 at 1pm and 6pm. This is part of the state's information gathering stage of implementing the Global Warming Solutions Act.

Unable to attend? Email Shannon at and we will pass along your sentiments.
Virtual Farm Bill Discussion with Pasa on April 8
Join Pennsylvania Sustainable Agriculture for a virtual lunchtime discussion about how the federal Farm Bill can better support sustainable farms and communities. This is a great chance to weigh in on an $85.6 billion piece of legislation that affects everything from crop insurance to SNAP.

Pasa policy staff will give brief overview of what’s included in the current bill, set to expire in 2023, with an emphasis on provisions related to conservation, forestry, and energy. Then it’s your turn to share your experiences working with existing Farm Bill programs and your ideas for changes and improvements. Your input and comments will be collected and shared them with advocates and policymakers working on the next iteration of the bill.

This listening session is supported by a grant from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition.
Farmers Market and Mobile Market Skill Share April 12

The Urban Agriculture Coalition is hosting their next skill share on April 12th from 11:30 am - 1 pm, focusing on farmers' markets and mobile markets.

This event will feature Grace Sliwoski and Ashley Carter from the REC, Zoey Sloate from CISA, JR from the Holyoke Farmers' Market, and Dai Kim from Mill City Grows as panelists. Please bring your questions, thoughts, experiences selling at or managing farmers' and mobile markets, plans for the upcoming season!
Food System Advocacy Training with the Wallace Center  

Political advocacy at the city, state, and federal levels is one of the most effective ways of achieving lasting systems change in our communities and food system, yet it can also be opaque & intimidating to engage in.

This April, join the Wallace Center’s Food Systems Leadership Network for a spring series dedicated to building our collective knowledge around policy and advocacy for food systems change. Learn more about the full series here.
They Keep Bees Queen School Registration Open

They Keep Bees, based in Western Mass, has opened registration for their Summer Generative Bee School beginning in May. A short enrollment form is required, but the program is using a pay-what-you-can model. Teachers and guest speakers include Queen Producers from across the continent.
UMass Stockbridge School Summer Ag Courses Now Registering

Registration is now open for the summer online classes offered by the UMass Stockbridge School of Agriculture. Courses include soil science and management, botany, community food systems, agroecology and more! You can find the full course schedule on their website.

These are college classes and satisfy the requirements in the 15 credit Certificate, the A.S. and the B.S. degrees in Sustainable Food and Farming. They may also be transferred to other universities and colleges.
New Entry Field Network Networking Event on Land Access This Friday
  • In what ways are producers finding access to farmland in your area? 
  • What are some of the strategies you use to overcome barriers and challenges? 
  • What are some of the more creative land tenure models you see in your region? 
  • How is your program supporting land access for graduates? 
  • What are the resources or partnerships that you rely on to support land access? 
Are you interested in incubator and apprentice farms, or find any of these questions interesting? Take a break from the spring flurry to mix and mingle with other incubator farm program staff and apprenticeship staff across the country to do some networking, connecting, and sharing of project updates! 

New Entry Field Network, a partnership between New Entry's National Incubator Farm Training Initiative and National Ag Apprentice Learning Network, is continuing their monthly networking series on Friday, April 8 with a conversation on "Group Land Tenure Models: Improving Land Access Beyond the Incubator/Apprenticeship Program." This event will feature Zachary Couture of Global Greens Farm at Lutheran Services Iowa, who will share details on their experiential farmer training program and their support for finding land for refugee farmers.
Incubator Farm Opportunity on 1.5 Acres at Rosasharn Farm

Rosasharn Farm in Rehoboth is offering approximately 1.5 acres of organically managed agricultural fields as a farm incubator this season. This opportunity may include resources such as the use of garden tools, on-site cool room, on-site farm stand and on site private one bedroom apartment.

Rosasharn are a cooperative farming operation in Rehoboth MA, near Providence RI and do not discriminate based on race, culture, gender, sexual orientation etc. If interested, please contact Anne Petersen for more information.
Want even more farmer-facing news? Check out SEMAP's latest Farmer Newsletter.
Subscribe to SEMAP's Farmer Newsletter here.
Buy Local News
Advocate for Our Local Food System
The nine Massachusetts Buy Local organizations - SEMAP, Berkshire Grown, Buy Fresh Buy Local Cape Cod, Central Mass Grown, CISA, Island Grown Martha's Vineyard, Northeast Harvest, Sustainable Business Network, and Sustainable Nantucket - have just released our White Paper for 2022! This document is an important tool for sharing our work and message with the public and with legislators. As we continue to advocate for Buy Local funding in the state's FY23 budget, the White Paper is a crucial tool to engaging people in Buy Local work, introducing our mission and the importance of local food to so many.

Make sure to read the White Paper to learn more about the great Buy Local work across the entire state! And be sure to contact your state legislators to let them know you support and value Buy Locals and encourage them to fund the Buy Local organizations! Your support is greatly appreciated.
CSA Shares Still Available from Under the Sun Farm
Under the Sun Farm, newly relocated but still in North Dighton, is offering CSA shares for the 2022 season! Options include a Full Share, great for veggie-heavy cooks or families of 4-6, and a Half Share, for smaller families or folks who just want a bit more local veggies when they eat at home.

Shares will run from late May thorugh early October. Pickup will be available at either the NEW Under the Sun Farmstand, or at the Swansea Spa!
First Spring Events at Osamequin Farm in April

Osamequin Farm have announced their schedule for Spring events on the farm, starting April 6 with the Gardeners Group series. Intended for gardeners of all experience levels, the first workshop will be on seedlings and growing in a nursery

Check out the event calendar for other events, including a Full Moon Hike, a Mother's Dat Storytelling Event, and their second annual Plant Sale!
Round the Bend Open Farm Season Kicks Off April 16
Round the Bend Farm in Dartmouth is hosting their first Open Farm Day of 2022 on Sunday, April 16! Come by for family-friendly farm tours, made-to-order burgers, and lots of fun for all!

There will also be a small market selling local meat, Round The Bend products, and medicinal herbs and teas from Nilsa's Herbal Tea's and Botanicals! The event runs from 10am-2pm, and is free and open to all!
Open Farm at Hope Alpaca Farm April 16-17

Come kick off the Spring at Hope Alpaca Farm during their April Open Farm event! The event is free and open to all - but do not bring dogs. Walk the farm and say hello to the alpacas, donkeys and ducks, and enter the raffle for a chance at adult and youth prizes! Join on either April 16 or 17 from 11am-3pm.
Foodchella 3 Returns to Somerset April 24

Southcoast Open Air Market have announced the return of Foodchella this month! Celebrate the Spring and local food at Arthur Chick Marchand Park from 4:30 to 7:30 pm

Grab a picnic blanket, bring a friend, the family, an empty stomach and head on down for an evening of fun, live energy filled music by 7 Day Weekend, and yummy food.
For even more local food and farm happenings, check out our event calendar.
What We're Watching
With the weather turning and Spring in our presence, now is the perfect time to throw down a blanket, take in the sunshine and enjoy a great book or film.

Last week, Needham Community Farm hosted a screening of Soul Fire Farm's virtual keynote/mini documentary, "Uprooting Racism, Seeding Sovereignty." Co-founder Leah Penniman traces the tragic history of our current food system, mapping the course from stealing land from Indigenous people and the institution of chattel slavery, through racist targeting of black farmers by federal agencies, all the way to our present moment where inequities in our food system persist.

While painful and poignant, Penniman also presents a hopeful view of the future, sharing the work that Soul Fire Farm and many BIPOC farmers are doing to fight against this history and create a more equitable food system. We highly recommend you find an opportunity to purchase and view this keynote to share with your community. You can also watch the trailer for free here for a taste of the film and for some extra inspiration. Thank you again to Needham Community Farm for showing the film and hosting a great panel!

Have something you've seen, heard, or read that you think fellow farmers & foodies would like, too? Send your recommendation to
What's in Season?
As the growing season continues, SEMAP wants to update you on current and upcoming produce in season in Southeastern Massachusetts. We hope this helps you plan recipes and get the most out of local food!
Throughout April, be on the lookout for...

  • Beets
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Collard greens
  • Garlic
  • Kale
  • Microgreens
  • Mushrooms
  • Peas
  • Sprouts

And don't forget about year-round local products like meat, dairy, eggs, and seafood!
Local Food Jobs
Have you checked out our Local Food Jobs page recently? You'll find local food and farm job listings relevant to Southeastern Massachusetts. Here are a few picks currently on the page. Want to share a listing? Email
Become a SEMAP Member
Renew Your SEMAP Membership or Become a Member Today!
Consider registering as a SEMAP Member. Membership in SEMAP helps us continue to provide promotion and support to farmers and consumers across Southeastern Massachusetts and beyond.

Members receive a host of benefits, including...
  • Access to business development and farming/gardening resources
  • Discounts to events like the Ag & Food Conference
  • Priority event sign-up
  • Special thank-you published in our Local Food Guide

Membership is available at several levels for businesses and individuals. Come join us!
PO Box 80625
S. Dartmouth, MA 02748 
Executive Director:
(508) 524-2601