Farm Foundations Workshop Helps Beginning Farmers Plan for Success

Farm Foundations Workshop Helps Beginning Farmers Plan for Success

Farm Foundations: Planning for Success

Southeast Regional Director Margo Hale traveled to Kentucky to help conduct a workshop for beginning farmers on Saturday, May 21. Margo teamed up with Program Specialist Andy Pressman from NCAT’s Northeast office, Mike Lewis of Growing Warriors, and Dr. Shawn Lucas of St. Catharine College’s Berry Farming Program to present the workshop.

Twenty-five participants, most of whom were military veterans, spent the morning in the classroom learning about starting a sustainable farming operation. Andy led a session on farm goal setting, business planning, and whole-farm planning. Margo spoke about recordkeeping and introduced participants to various USDA programs. Mike, along with Linda Bokros of Kentucky AgrAbility, talked about the AgrAbility program and how it can help farmers.

Participants in the Farm Foundations: Planning for Success workshop learned to build a chicken tractor for pastured poultry.
Participants in the Farm Foundations: Planning for Success workshop learned to build a chicken tractor for pastured poultry.

Following the classroom sessions, Andy and Dr. Lucas demonstrated several types of farm equipment, and Dr. Lucas led a tour of the St. Catharine College farm site. Participants then gamely braved a rainstorm to construct two chicken tractors that will be used in pastured poultry production on the St. Catharine farm.

Saturday’s workshop was the first in a three-part beginning farmer workshop series called Farm Foundations: Planning for Success. This workshop series is for military veterans and socially disadvantaged farmers. Participants who registered for Saturday’s workshop will attend two additional trainings later in the summer.

This project is supported by the Outreach and Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmer and Rancher Program of the Office of Advocacy and Outreach, USDA, Grant # 59-2501-15-026.

Find Out More

See the Growing Warriors website to learn more about their mission and activities. Find out more about the Berry Farming and Ecological Agrarianism Program at St. Catharine College here.

For more information about NCAT’s resources and training events for veterans, visit our Armed to Farm page.

New to farming? Visit ATTRA’s Beginning Farmer page to access online tutorials, publications, and other resources; email questions to askanag@ncat.org; or call our toll-free helpline for one-on-one technical assistance: 1-800-346-9140.

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