The Vine - October 2021
Photo at Oake Knoll Farms in Foxboro
Dear Friends,
As pumpkins pop up at farm stands, the morning chill lasts just a bit longer each day, and the forest backdrops of our local farms start to change color, I can't believe it's already October! This time of year brings with it lots of New England's tastiest produce (hello, cranberry season!) and coziest on-farm activities (hayrides and hot apple cider, anyone?). Be sure to soak it all in!

The seasonal changes also encourage us to look ahead to what's in store for the next few months, and one of the big things on my mind is securing funds for Massachusetts farmers through the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Amidst crises of public health, economic collapse, and climate change, farmers have continued to feed us, provide jobs, and steward the land & waterways. We must invest ARPA funds into our farmers and support solutions to challenges that they face – challenges of land inaccessibility, labor shortages, extreme weather events, and more. If you are a farmer or fisher with thoughts on how ARPA funds would be useful to you, please reach out to me and share your ideas so I can better advocate for our region.

In the meantime, wishing everyone a month full of local food, abundant sunshine, and happy memories!

Karen Schwalbe
Executive Director
What Do You Want to See at Our 2022 Ag & Food Conference?
We're working hard planning SEMAP's 15th annual Agriculture & Food Conference and we want to hear your thoughts! Please fill out this quick, 5-question survey to help us make this conference the best one yet. Anyone who completes it will receive a 10% discount on the ticket price!

Don't forget to mark you calendars for this year's one-day event: February 27th! Decisions are still being made about an in-person element, but this conference will definitely be accessible virtually. If you are interested in presenting a farming technique, research results, or other relevant material, please reach out. Send questions or suggestions to
Take a Cranberry Bog Tour
It's time again for the harvest of our official state fruit, the cranberry! Have you ever seen those bright red, flooded bogs, chatted with a cranberry grower, or learned the history of this resilient crop? Now's your chance!

Take a guided tour of Southeastern Massachusetts's iconic cranberry bogs with Massachusetts Cranberries. Weekend dates are available through mid-October, but spots are limited. This is a family-friendly activity and children under 5 are admitted for free!
News For Farmers and
Food Professionals
Many Grant Funding Opportunities Available

Are you aware of the many state and federal grant programs currently open to farmers, fishers, farmers' market managers, and other players in the local food system? Find a collection of relevant grants on our new Grant Funding 101 page. Right now, this page houses resources for grant opportunities like the second (and likely last!) round of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP-2), the Division of Marine Fisheries Seafood Marketing Grant, and the most recent round of the Food Security Infrastructure Grant (FSIG).

Speaking of FSIG, did you miss last week's grant-writing workshop? Review the recording and notes, and contact with any questions.

Bookmark this page, as we'll update it weekly and share tips, strategies, and workshops to improve your application and reduce your grant-writing stress. Many current grants have deadlines within the next two weeks so check it out today!
USDA Seeks Nominations for Equity Commission Advisory Members
In an effort to "address historical discrimination and disparities in the agriculture sector," the USDA is establishing an Equity Commission and Subcommittee on Agriculture with the goal of identifying actionable ways to rectify and address inequities in service, access to funding & support, and agricultural outcomes for underserved communities.

They are currently seeking nominations, and 30 agricultural stakeholders representing diverse geographies, demographics, abilities, and backgrounds will be selected across both bodies. Find more information and make nominations by October 27th here.
Invasive Spotted Lanternfly Discovered in Worcester County

Agricultural inspectors have discovered a small population of the highly invasive spotted lanternfly in Fitchburg. Their preferred host plants are maple & walnut trees, tree-of-heaven, and grape vines. Please be on the lookout, collect any you may find, and report sightings to MDAR.
Food Retailer Grant Announcement from Reinvestment Fund

The Healthy Food Financing Initiative Grant (HFFI) will fund fresh food retail businesses working towards improving access to healthy foods in underserved areas. The grant aims to create and preserve quality jobs, as well as revitalize low-income communities.

Be Featured in a Video!

What you do in a typical day? Why did you become a farmer or fisher? What do you wish Massachusetts consumers knew about you or your business?

We are planning a series of short social media videos highlighting farmers and fishers in Bristol, Plymouth, and Norfolk counties. Take viewers on a trip through the world of agriculture or aquaculture! If you're interested, email
Want even more farmer-facing news? Check out SEMAP's latest Farmer Newsletter.
Subscribe to SEMAP's Farmer Newsletter here.
Buy Local News
SEMAP 2021 Annual Meeting
Save the Date for our 2021 Annual Meeting. There will be a premiere of SEMAP's video projects this year as well as a presentation of the new 2021 Food System Assessment. This will be a virtual event.
Apply for the Master Urban Gardener Program

Want to try your hand at backyard produce gardening? Been gardening for years but looking to brush up or share some skills? Apply for The Trustees' Master Urban Gardener course, an 8-week virtual program suited for gardeners, urban growers, and newbies alike. Applications are due October 2nd.
Trick-or-Treat Halloween Hayrides at Anawan Farm

Hayrides have kicked off at Anawan Farm in Rehoboth. Join them for Trick-or-Treat rides in the month of October! Ride through pumpkin fields and find candy along the way. Due to COVID-19, reservations are required. Book your private ride today!
The Office of State Senator Mark C. Montigny (2nd Bristol & Plymouth), The Marion Institute, and UMass Dartmouth invite you to the 2021 Food Summit!
On Wednesday, October 13th from 6:30–8:00pm, The Marion Institute’s Southcoast Food Policy Council will present key findings from the newly completed 2021 Food System Assessment Report for Southeastern Massachusetts. Panelists will discuss the role the report plays in helping to support food policy work and improved local food systems.
Talking Turkey at DaSilva Farm in Rehoboth

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and it's time to order your fresh, local turkey! DaSilva Farm is now accepting orders. Raised free-range, on non-GMO grain, and without growth hormones, these birds will make a great main course on Turkey Day.
Register for the Powisset Farm Trail Run

Sign up for Powisset Farm's annual farm trail run, held on Sunday October 17th. With three distance options, this event is great for all running comfort levels and has been rated Top Ten Autumn Trail Races in the country by RootsRated. A portion of the registration fee supports farm operations.
Celebrate Fall with Buzzards Bay Brewing

Every Friday and Saturday in October, stop by Buzzards Bay Brewing in Westport for an Oktoberfest feast of local bratwurst and other tasty treats. The perfect pairing for their new brew, Dumpling Rock Bock.
Cut Flower Papermaking Workshop in Seekonk

Join May Babcock and our friends at Osamequin Farm in Seekonk on Saturday, October 9th for a day of arts and crafts! Make paper from cut flower stems and leaf waste. Spots are very limited and tickets are required. Buy your ticket now!
Revival Farm Pop-Up Market Next Weekend

Stop by the pop-up market at Revival Farm in Plympton for your favorite pasture raised pork, Plympton Poultry chicken and Bogside Acres beef. Open on Sunday October 10th from 9:00am to noon. Can't make it? Order online any time!
It's Definitely Fall at Lolans Farm!

Lolans Farm stand in Middleboro has gourds, cornstalks, and pumpkins for your fall decorating needs. You can find veggies for dinner, too, every day from 11am to 5pm.
For even more local food and farm happenings, check out our event calendar.
What We're Reading
The SEMAP team is excited to continue our new Vine segment where we share what we're reading, watching, and/or listening to that's relevant to farming and food systems!

This month, we're reading The Bone and Sinew of the Land: America's Forgotten Black Pioneers & the Struggle for Equality, a book by Anna-Lisa Cox. This historical non-fiction tells the story of early Black farmers in the American West.

It provides helpful context for a piece of proposed state legislation, An Act Promoting Equity in Agriculture (S.502/H.860). This bill would create a commission of diverse farmers to advise the Massachusetts Department of Agriculture (MDAR) in addressing systemic disparities in agricultural access, especially for BIPOC and immigrant farmers. SEMAP supports the passage of this bill, and urges you to share your support with your state legislators, too!
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 October, be on the lookout for...
  • Apples
  • Cranberries
  • Pears
  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Chard
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Pumpkins
  • Winter squashes
Photo from Chamberlain Farm
in Berkley.
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
Temporary Farming, Building & Cooking Help at White Barn Farm in Wrentham
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