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The Vine - December 2019
Double your donation to SEMAP through Patagonia Action Works

SEMAP has been awarded a grant through Patagonia for our work on regenerative pasture management on local fiber farms, and they are now doubling all donations to SEMAP through the link below! This is a great opportunity to leverage your donation for maximal impact! Our programs rely on support from our supporters like you, consider a donation today to have it doubled!

Spotlight: The Farm at Raven Brook's Christmas Trees

HALIFAX, MA - Just eleven months ago, in January 2019, Kimberly and Matt Campbell officially became the proud owners of a 30-acre farm formerly known as Raven Brook Farm in Halifax. Since 1995, the former owners, the Sanborn family, had planted and sold several varieties of Christmas trees on the property. In hopes of preserving the history while nodding to the future, the Campbells named their new farm The Farm at Raven Brook, and they look forward to continuing the Christmas tree tradition for generations to come.

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Ag & Food Conference Early Bird Tickets Available, ends Jan 31st

Farmers, gardeners, homesteaders, advocates, foodies, and anyone interested in local agriculture: join us for our 13th Annual Agriculture & Food Conference on February 23rd, 2020! We will be having another round of engaging and useful workshops, a resource fair, keynote address, and an always tasty locally-sourced lunch. Hosted at Bristol County Agricultural High School in Dighton, MA. Our early bird discount is available until January 31st! 

Sponsor, Exhibit, or Donate Farm Products to the Ag & Food Conference!

Our Annual Conference is a hub of learning, conversation, and good food. 

Make the most of the opportunity to connect with the agricultural community by signing up as a sponsor for our event, or s etting up a table at our exhibitor fair. Learn more here.

Or make a donation of vegetables, fruit, meat, or preserves for our delicious conference lunch by emailing
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Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) Program Listening Session, January 30th

What do you think of the Massachusetts Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) program? Join APR landowners, advocates, and program and MDAR staff for a regional public event to review the program to help guide its future. This will include updates from the listening sessions in 2018-2019, and policies, procedures, regulations, guidance, and efforts to improve and modernize the APR Program. The SE Mass session will be January 30th, 6-8pm at Bristol Aggie's Gilbert Hall Library, Room 212, located at 135 Center Street, Dighton, MA.

BCC Sustainable Agriculture Program Seeking Businesses for Internships

Would you be interested in having a responsible, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic college student from Bristol Community College join you as an intern at your place of business?  The Bristol Community College's Sustainable Agriculture program now includes an experiential education component and is looking for community partners to welcome interns for either a spring, fall, or summer semester.

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Winter Farmers Market Guide

Our latest edition of our Winter Farmers Market Guide has been updated and published! Whether you are looking for locally sourced winter greens or holiday gifts, there's few places better than the farmers market.

Farm Financial Training by the Carrot Project

The Making It Happen: Profitability and Success training series for farmers and food processors will give you the financial management toolbox needed to improve your business decision making and profitability. This interactive course is intended for producers with at least one year of operating experience. Held on multiple dates in January & February.
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Product Development Course for Small Food Businesses, December 11-12th

Are you an entrepreneur developing new and exciting food products? Do you have questions about ensuring the safety of your product? If so, this is the program for you! This course is a 1.5-day program designed specifically to address product development and food safety issues faced by small processors. Throughout the course, you will be introduced to the food science basics, important considerations when developing a new food product, key elements required for product labeling, and an overview of key regulatory requirements. Hosted at Hope & Main in Warren, RI.

Farmer Focus Group: Exploring Novel Approaches to Farm Labor, January 11th

Do you struggle with getting all the work done on your farm?  Do you have challenges attracting and retaining employees?  Are you interested in working with other farmers to design solutions to labor challenges?  If so, consider attending the farmer focus group, Exploring Novel Approaches to Farm Labor, at the NOFA/Mass Winter Conference in Worcester on January 11th from 9:00-10:30. We will discuss four potential models and the opportunities, challenges, and interests of each one. We are seeking small to mid-scale diversified fruit and vegetable farmers in New England.

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Member Announcements

Weatherlow Farm Farm Store Open for Grass-Fed Beef, Florals, and Prepared Foods

Weatherlow Farms in Westport raises the highest quality grass-fed beef, lamb, chevon, poultry and eggs in the seaside town of Westport, MA.  They grow a curated selection of flowers and foliages, designing bouquets and arrangements for weddings and special events with materials entirely from the farm.  Livestock and florals are cared for with environmentally sustainable and socially responsible practices which focus on the special connection between soil health, animal health and human health.  

The Store at Weatherlow Farms is open weekly on Fridays from 11AM - 6PM and Saturdays and Sundays 9AM - 3PM.  The Store features farm raised proteins and florals, regional specialties and a large selection of prepared foods made onsite by their chef.  Special holiday offerings and custom bouquets are now available. 

Foxboro Cheese Tasting this Saturday, 10am - 2pm

This Saturday, December 7th, between 10AM and 2PM Foxboro Cheese will have a cheese sampling at our farm stand located at 70 North St. Foxboro, MA.

You can try our new Maple Yogurt, our Bettah than Feta, Fromage Blanc and our Asiago, which ranges in age from 3 years to 2 months. Make sure to ask Ana about our Reserve Asiago, which is exceptional right now.  We are thrilled to offer so many delicious cheeses from our grass-fed Ayrshire cows. Ayrshires are known for their high-quality milk, which in turn makes phenomenal cheeses. 

We will be preparing special cheese gift packages which will be available at the farm stand during the cheese tasting and through the month of December.

A Subscription to Edible South Shore & South Coast - the Perfect Holiday Gift!

The perfect way to support local. Subscribe to eSS&SS to help them tell more local stories and keep their publication alive and well.

An eSS&SC subscription is a great gift idea. They'll receive every seasonal issue hot-off-the-press and you'll help support their mission!

Hope Alpacas Open Farm Days

Enjoy Open Farm Days at Hope Alpaca Farm, a perfect opportunity to meet our alpacas, shop our alpaca products, and enjoy the farm.
We will be selling our products including socks, gloves, mittens, hats, scarves, headband, plush toys, farm t-shirts, yarn, and new this year we are selling free trade items from Peru! We will serve refreshments, cookies and cider. All ages welcome!  Open Saturdays, 11AM-4PM, on December 7th, 14th, and 21st.

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Support SEMAP With a Membership!
Enjoying our newsletter? Become a SEMAP Member today for as little as $15 for a first timer to support our work on this and many other projects throughout the region. From healthy food access, to land access, and farmer support, we work hard to support our region's farms and food system. 
Join us today!

Not sure if it's time to renew?
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Fiber Farmers: Take Our Survey
SEMAP and the Southeastern New England Fibershed are looking to better understand fiber production in Southeastern New England. How much fiber is being produced? What kinds of animals are being raised? What is being done with the fiber? 

Bottom line: if your farm produces fiber, take the survey below!

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