November 1,  2016
In this Weekly Harvest:     
Funding Options Available through FSA Programs

We are teaming up with the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to educate beginning, specialty, and non-commodity crop farmers about funding programs available through the agency. In recent years, FSA has worked to expand their financing programs to better serve these groups of farmers. Their programs give preferential treatment to beginning and socially disadvantaged groups. FSA officials will be walking farmers through eligibility criteria and the application process, as well as describing various loan, conservation, and emergency assistance programs available to specialty and non-commodity crop farmers. In addition to FSA officials, a panel of farmers will describe their experiences working with FSA funding and how it has helped their businesses.

The Land Connection has also been working with FSA to create a prined guide that walks farmers through the many programs available through the agency. Participants in this workshop will receive the first copies of this new guide to take home and use as they determine which funding options serve their needs the best.

Join us on  February 11, from  1:15pm-4:30pm at Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery's classroom in Champaign, IL. Registration is $20.  More information and registration are available  here.
farmfnWhat We're Reading

This easy to read book is an interesting look at the historical diversified rotational pasture-based agriculture of Britain and how government policy dramatically changed the rural landscape and farming practices after World War Two. 
The book articulates the downsides of this transition from a variety of viewpoints, and also talks about the benefits of pastured animals not only for human dietary health, but also for the health of the animals, and the overall health of the environment.


WorkshopsWorkshops, Field Days, and Grant Opportunities

Small Dairy Intensive
Sunday, December 4, 9am-4pm 
We're teaming up with experts Leslie Cooperband and Wes Jarrell of Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery to bring you answers to your milk selling questions.  Two sequential half-day workshops lead you through legal regulations, milk handling equipment, feed formulations for milk quality, and the economics of bringing milk from the udder to the table. The content will cover information for both cow and goat operations.   Lunch is included with full-day registration.  Click here to learn more.

Managing Risk in Organic Grain Farming - Workshop Series
This series of workshops is designed to help you manage risk in organic grain production, marketing, and financing. The four-workshop series started in J uly and runs through February. Each workshop costs $25 to register, or $75 to register for all four. Learn more about the workshops and register here.

Farm Services Agency Workshop
February 11, 2017
Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery
Officials from the Illinois state FSA office will be presenting a three-hour workshop, walking attendees through programs designed to assist farmers with access to operating credit, real estate financing, conservation support programs, and disaster relief. Attendees will learn about eligibility and preferential funding groups such as beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers. The workshop will conclude with a panel of farmers describing their experiences with the loan application process and how access to FSA funding has improved their businesses.  Attendees of this workshop will be the first to receive The Land Connection's new printed guide to FSA programs for specialty and non-commodity crop farmers.  Learn more and register here.


Honeybee Conservancy Invites Applications for Beekeeping Materials
The  Honeybee Conservancy  is inviting applications for in-kind grants designed to help nonprofit organizations or schools safely set up, maintain, and observe on-site bee sanctuaries in schools, community gardens, and green spaces across the United States. Learn more about the funding opportunity here.


SARE Farmer Rancher grant writing webinar
Tuesday, November 1, 2016
6:00-8:00 pm
Join SARE Farmer Rancher Grant coordinator Joan Benjamin and MN SARE Coordinators Wayne Martin and Kate Seager as they provide an overview of the SARE Farmer Rancher grant program and answer any questions you may have.  
As a reminder, the SARE Farmer Rancher Grant program is accepting proposals until  December 8, 2016. More information about the SARE Farmer Rancher program can be found  here
For planning purposes we ask that you register for this webinar  here
The meeting link can be found here.
Women's Committee/YAL Organic AG Presentation
November 3, 2016 at 6:30 PM
Champaign County Farm Bureau Auditorium
801 N Country Fair Dr
Champaign, IL 
This presentation is to focus on the efforts of organic farming practices, open to all members of the Champaign County Community. The speakers featured for the evening are Angie Duitsman-Coxworth and Harold Wilken.   Learn more here.

2017 Fall Field Day On-Farm Processing to Add Value to a Diversified Farm 
November 4, 2016
9:00 am -4:00 pm
Blue Heron  Orchard
Canton, MO 
The field day will begin on farm, lunch (included in cost of field day) and presentations will be in town Map/directions will be provided, travel is on your own Options for lodging to follow Questions or registration: contact OFGA Coordinator Rachel Henderson at, or  612-280-2438.

Good Food is Good Medicine Symposium
Saturday November 5, 2016
9 am- 4 pm
Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Feinberg Pavilion, 3rd floor
251 E Huron St., Chicago, IL 60611
Proper diet is a fundamental building block to good health, but how do you sort through all the confusing information to know what diet is best for you?  The Osher Center in collaboration with FamilyFarmed brings you a daylong program filled with valuable information based on the latest science.   Learn more here.

Illinois Farmers Market Association Fall Workshop
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
8:00 AM - 2:30 PM
Lake House @ Crystal Lake Park, 206 W. Park Street, Urbana, IL
Join Urbana's Market at the Square staff as they host the Illinois Farmers Market Association's Fall Workshop. Learn from current market producers, meet with market managers, and network with individuals in the farmers market field coming to the workshop from across the region.   Learn more here.

Fund-a-Farmer Webinars
Please join Food Animal Concerns Trust for one or both of their free upcoming webinars. 

Understanding Farm Animal Welfare Certification 
Tuesday, November 15
10:00 AM CST
Are you considering Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Humane, and Global Animal Partnership certification? This webinar will walk you through the process of becoming welfare-certified and discuss funding options available to farmers interested in certification - including FACT's Animal Welfare Certification Grants.   Register here.

6th Annual Local and Regional Food Conference
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
The Pavilion, Marion, IL
This event brings farmers and industry together to learn how to be engaged in meeting the demand for local and regional food.  The event is a  collaboration of the Illinois Farm Bureau and southern Illinois Farm Bureaus, Missouri Farm Bureau, Kentucky Farm Bureau, Indiana Farm Bureau, Illinois Department of Agriculture, Southern Illinois University, University of Illinois Extension, Food Works, and Illinois Specialty Growers Association. Learn more here.

Illinois Specialty Crops, Agritourism, and Organic Conference
January 11-13, 2017
Crowne Plaza Hotel and Convention Center
Springfield, IL
The 2017 Illinois Specialty Crops, Agritourism, and Organic Conference and Trade Show will be Jan. 11-13, 2017, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel and Convention Center, Springfield, Illinois. See the schedule  and learn more about the conference and registration here .

2017 Good Food Festival & Conference
March 16-18, 2017
UIC Forum, Chicago
The Good Food Festival & Conference Is The Midwest's Premier Showcase For Local And Sustainable Food.  Celebrate our region's growing local food community!  The 13th Annual Good Food Festival & Conference will connect farmers, food producers, investors, trade buyers, policy makers, activists, families and Good Food lovers over three dynamic days.  Learn more here.
Bloog It's Time to "Cover-Up" for Winter
When I left the house this morning, I exhaled in the last rays of moonlight and gazed as the mist of my breath dissipated in the gentle breeze. I was cold and grateful. I was grateful that I had everything I need to survive the morning in that frigid air. I had a full belly of the morning's breakfast. I was well hydrated. I was breathing the oxygen rich morning air. And, I was clothed in the heavy winter sweater I recently pulled from summer storage. The organism of my body was supported. But, then, I turned my head and witnessed a heartbreaking view of the all-too-common autumn sight of bare soil stretching for hundreds of acres.

agnews Agriculture in the News:
Something you should know
Across the European Union people are taking control of their food systems by supporting CSAs. Learn more here.
Something you should do
Grow a cover crop this fall. Read more here.

Something to be happy about
Committee on World Food Security urges transformation of food systems. Read more here.

You can post your ad or search for more listings in the  classifieds section  o f our website. To have something listed in the Weekly Harvest, email us at or call 217-840-2128.

Employment Opportunities:

The Savanna Institute invites applications for a Program Manager. We seek applicants who share our passion for restorative and resilient agricultural practices. The Savanna Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Urbana, Illinois. The Program Manager will manage the diverse research and education programs of the Savanna Institute. This position reports to the Executive Director.  Read more here.
We are seeking interns/crew members to start immediately. This is a paid, full-time position with room and board available.   No experience is necessary, but experience in physical labor or mechanical work and animal care is helpful and a great attitude is a must. 

For more information and to apply, contact Julie Larson at

Do you want to farm?  Do you have land but not the skills to tend to it?  Have you wondered what it would be like to spend a summer growing food for a community surrounding a farm?  

Our apprenticeship is designed to give individuals with the desire to farm and grow food an opportunity to do that on a production scale to make a living.  We offer housing & monthly stipend in exchange for a full season commitment. 

We raise mixed produce for CSA, farmer's markets and wholesale customers.  We'll work side-by-side from seed to sale in hopes that you finish the season with a solid grasp of what it takes to run a small farm. Interns are expected to work quickly and efficiently in good and bad weather, to ask questions, and to learn from mistakes. Stipend starting @ $800/month and food from the farm as well as shared housing for the right candidate.
Full-time and part-time positions available. Contact Dylan at!

We are hiring for farm hands. This is part-time work starting in May or June running into December. You would be doing all kinds of manual labor: harvesting, weeding, washing, occasional transplanting and general cleanup. The benefits are hard to beat: lots of produce, exercise, and interesting people to talk to. No experience needed. For an application, visit our website. Please fill it out and sen to:

Land, Equipment, and Other:

NEW HOLLAND 1034 BALE WAGON (Mechanical hay loader/stacker)
A pull type wagon that can mechanically pick small square hay bales up out of the field and stack them into pallets of 100 bales that can be moved with a forklift. Always shedded while I've owned them, since 1999. I've quit raising hay. Two available. Asking $5,000 each, obo. 100 pallets also available. Pictures available here. Contact Brian Severson at  815-584-1850 or email

Selling at least 8 pastured, non-GMO fed, antibiotic-free pigs for around $1 a pound. Also available are a few  Red wattles which are antibiotic free, grown outside and will sell for 85 cents per pound. If you are interested contact Ammon Troyer at (217) 543-2979.

LAND USE OPPORTUNITY:  2.5 acres on north side of Aurora, IL
Landowner is making land available for garden/farm use. Has been in grass since 1981. Located near Indian Trail and Mitchell Road. Call owner Bill Robinson at  (630) 927-0519.

We hope to see someone purchase our family farm for organic farming practices. 40 acres- 20 acres planted soybeans 2016 + 20 acres fenced pastures/timber w/creek, pond. Modular home, pole barn, municipal water supply plus 2 other wells,300 amp electric, new septic system.  Past operations on property:  horses,  aquaculture (pond & creek), poultry, hogs, sheep, dairy, beef, honey, nuts, fruit trees, berries, mushrooms, herbs (woodland and planted), gardens (floral and vegetable), lots of wildlife habitat and mature timber.  Learn more here.

Thank you to all the sponsors, donors, and supporters that make the daily operations and programs of The Land Connection possible. We couldn't do it without you!


 And thanks to all of our 2016 Market Sponsors!

 Emmanuel Memorial Episcopal Church