As we reported last week, the new five-year farm bill has passed – so where do we go from here?
We keep organizing! In this newsletter we’ll fill you in on what’s next in policy; introduce two new western initiatives (and our new staff members making it happen); and get you linked up with our cooperative webinars, expert advice on draft animal power and a wave of trainings, potlucks and parties hosted across the country by NYFC’s chapters.
Even though we passed the Farm Bill “finish line,” we’ve still got plenty to do!
Webinars on Cooperative Models for Farmers Now Available
Click below to stream the videos online!
Agricultural Water Conservation Project Promotes Resilience, New Thinking & Farmer-to-Farmer Exchanges
NYFC and the Family Farm Alliance are partnering to highlight how farmers are adapting to extended drought and tenuous water supply across the Western U.S.
This project will include extensive research and outreach, a farmer-to-farmer best practices exchange and farm tour, as well as multi-media case studies which tell the farmers’ stories, provide data and set the stage for policy improvements and cross-regional adoption of these resilient, innovative approaches.
Click here to read more about the project, and stay tuned!
Farm Bill Clears Washington, After Two Years of Delays
On February 7th, Obama signed into law a new five-year farm bill that had been held up for the past two years by partisan bickering. Making sure the bill invests in beginning farmers has been one of NYFC’s primary policy objectives in that time, and we’re proud to say we met that goal.
The new bill has some compromises, and it includes cuts to food stamps and limited crop subsidy reform, but we made serious headway for young and beginning farmers. What parts are we excited about?
Additions to the NYFC Team!
We are excited to announce several new additions to our staff:
Sarah Wentzel-Fisher – Sarah joined us last month as the New Mexico Field Organizer. Based in Albuquerque, NM, Sarah is organizing farmers and ranchers across the state to advocate for better conservation policies, and is spurring local chapter creation and growing the existing Rio Grande Farmers Coalition.
Daniel Fullmer – Daniel joined NYFC earlier this month as the new Western Project Coordinator. He will be managing NYFC’s Agricultural Water Conservation Education and Outreach project, an initiative designed to generate farmer-to-farmer exchanges across the West surrounding best-practices for agricultural water efficiency and conservation in arid regions.
Eleanor Shute! – NYFC Executive Director Lindsey Shute welcomed her daughter Eleanor into the world last month. The newest of the “next generation” of farmers, Eleanor looks forward to a supportive community of future farmers like herself! Oklahoma farmer and former board member Emily Oakley is filling in as interim Executive Director while Lindsey is on maternity leave.
LAS VEGAS, NV: Family Farm Alliance Annual Meeting and Conference – February 19th-21st
CENTRAL COAST, CA: HopeDance Films Water Crisis Film Series – Month of February
CORVALLIS, OR: Small Farms Conference Hoedown – February 22nd
SONOMA, CA: Sonoma Valley Farmers Guild Meeting – February 23rd
HARTFORD, CT: New Connecticut Farmer Alliance Annual Meeting and Hootenanny! – February 23rd
The New Connecticut Farmer Alliance brings together emerging farmers from across CT to network, share resources and identify common challenges and opportunities for a more accessible, successful and diverse agricultural community.
ONLINE: Donn Hewes, Draft Animal Expert, on the NYFC Farmers Forum – February 24th-28th
LA CROSSE, WI: MOSES Conference – February 27th-March 1st
Farming in Wisconsin? Come meet up with other Wisconsin farmers and get involved in the Wisconsin Young Farmers Coalition. You can connect with the group at either the NYFC or the Greenhorns tables in the exhibitor hall.
DAVIS, CA: Yolo Farmers Guild Meeting – March 3rd
HEALDSBURG, CA: North Coast Farmers Guild Meeting – March 4th
NATHROP, CO: Colorado Land Link Forum & Young Farmer Mixer – March 7th-8th
AUSTIN, TX: TXYFC Presents: Low Tech Bed Preparation and Equipment Discussion and Tour at Buena Tierra Farm! – March 9th
Come join the TXYFC March 9th for a tour and discussion concerning low tech. bed preparation methods and equipment use. For many years Steve farmed with a simple Allis-Chalmers tractor and very limited equipment. In an industry where bigger is often seen as better, Steve’s farm stands as an example that big and fancy is not the only way to go, especially when first starting out.
Come ready to share any knowledge or experience you have, as Steve and Carey are eager to learn as much from us as we may learn from them! Event runs 10:30 am – 4 pm. Visit the website for more details.
DENVER, CO: Front Range Beginning Farmers Conference – March 9th
WAUNAKEE, WI: Wisconsin Maple Syruping and Campfire – March 22nd
CENTRE HALL, PA: Central PA Young Farmers Potluck – March 22nd or 29th
BELLEVILLE, WISCONSIN: New Farmer Summit – April 4-5
Lindsey, Emily, Wes, Sophie, Kate, Ellie, Debbie, Kacey, Sarah and Daniel