November 15,  2016
In this Weekly Harvest:     
toppp    Spice up your Holidays with The Land Connection 
Join us Tuesday, December 6 for an evening of farmers, food, and fun at the 2016 Land Connection Holiday Happy Hour.

Your ticket gets you cheese and hors d'oeuvres from Pizzeria Antica, plus one drink. A cash bar will also be available, and we'll be holding a raffle full of fabulous prizes from local farmers, artisans, and businesses. All proceeds benefit The Land Connection.

We can't wait to celebrate the season with you!
WhenDecember 6, 5-8pm
Where: Pizzeria Antica, Champaign, IL
How much: $20                                  
More information and tickets are available  here .
impact Community Impact
The Champaign Farmers' Market was proud to feature farmers who are working hard to fight food security in and around Champaign-Urbana.

Since 2012, Sola Gratia Farm has been dedicated to not only growing high-quality local produce, but to helping ensure our community has access to healthy food, by donating at least 10% of their crops to local organizations work with the hungry.

Sola Gratia is offering a Thanksgiving box for $30, or 2 for $50. Each box contains enough seasonal veggies for 4-5 people! Purchase one for your turkey day and/or donate a Thanksgiving box to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank to help feed local families in need. 

Sign-up deadline is this Friday. For more information and reservations, email

Find out how you can help us fund important programs like the Champaign Farmers' Market here.

farmfnWhat We're Reading

Ben Falk's  The Resilient Farm and Homestead  talks about how permiculture design and implementation can regenerate a worn out piece of land in Vermont (or anywhere else) and turn it into a productive and thriving environment.  Who would have imagined you could grow rice in the northern part of Vermont?

This book is an interesting and informative "how-to" manual from selecting land through to final management.   A very nice guide to self-reliance in a challenging climate zone, starting with a severely degraded parcel.  Ben Falk makes you feel that you too could be successful! 


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.


Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program
The National Institute of Food and Agriculture FINI Grant Program supports projects to increase the purchase of fruits and vegetables among low-income consumers participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by providing incentives at the point of purchase. Three funding levels are available for different project scales by farmers' markets, farmstands, or other food system stakeholders. Applications are due Decemmber 12. Learn more about the funding opportunity 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.

Putting Small Acres to Work
Saturday, December 3, 2016
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
NIU Rockford Meeting and Conference Center, Rockford , IL
This event is designed to help people with rural property explore opportunities to use that land as a springboard into agriculture.  Outreach professionals from University of Illinois Extension and a local farmer will lead  general sessions on permaculture and farm-scale energy production, as well as numerous breakout sessions on both plant and animal topics, including tomatoes and peppers, microgreens, shiitake mushrooms, raising livestock for fiber, meat goat production, and controlling weeds in pastures. The program fee is $40 per person, which includes all program materials and lunch.  Registration deadline is Monday, November 28, to guarantee a space and a meal.   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, December 13
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.

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 Looking ahead as Farmers' Market season winds down

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and what a better time to reflect on how thankful we all are for our farmers, putting in long hours, hard labor, and their resources to give us amazing and delicious food. It's important to remember our farmers and be thankful for all they do to reduce food insecurity, but let's take it another step this year by actually supporting our farmers this season and purchasing ingredients for the big feast locally. Not only will your side and main dishes taste extra delicious with this local produce, but you'd be helping a farmer and their family also have a bountiful Thanksgiving as well. 

agnews Agriculture in the News:
Something you should know
Our agricultural future could be saved by a honeybee gene bank. Read more here.
Something you should do
Nominate your favorite local food pioneers for the Golden Beet Awards. Learn more here.

Something to be happy about
A ginormous cabbage can feed a whole lotta people. 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:

Illinois Stewardship Alliance seeks qualified applicants for the position of Executive Director. Illinois Stewardship Alliance is a statewide 501c3 nonprofit organization located in Springfield, IL dedicated to cultivating a local food and farm system that is economically viable, socially just and environmentally sustainable. Established in 1974, Illinois Stewardship Alliance has a history of advocating for conservation on Illinois' farmlands and supporting the development of local food systems. The organization has three key program areas including Conservation, Local Food and Policy Advocacy. Additionally, Illinois Stewardship Alliance serves as fiscal sponsor for Illinois Organic Growers Association, Band of Farmers CSA Coalition and Grow Springfield.

Learn more about the position hereEmail cover letter and resume by Friday, December 2 to:  or mail to: Illinois Stewardship Alliance, 230 Broadway, Suite 200, Springfield, IL 62701

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