Building a good farm team — Part 2

Being a good farm boss

by Sanne Kure-Jensen

When successful farm businesses grow beyond what farmers can do themselves, it is time to bring in outside labor. Making a good hiring decision helps a farm owner/manager and farm workers build an efficient, productive and happy team. [Read more…]

The New England Small Farm Institute

by George Looby, DVM

The New England Small Farm Institute (NESFI) is a land based, non-profit organization located in Belchertown, MA on a 416-acre property that once served as the Belchertown State School. Founded in 1978 by a local citizens action group, to encourage more sustainable regional agriculture. This group was Women in Agriculture, Food Policy and Land Use Reform whose mission was and continues to be to promote small farm development by providing information and training for aspiring, beginning or transitional farmers. [Read more…]

Building a good farm team — Part 1

CN-MR-2-FARM-TEAM_31by Sanne Kure-Jensen

Making a good hiring decision helps farm owners/managers and farm workers build an efficient, productive and happy team. David Hambleton has been the farm manager of Sisters Hill Farm in Stanfordville, NY for 16 years. He shared his experience with hiring, training and managing over 30 Apprentices in a workshop at the 2015 Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York (NOFA-NY) Winter Conference. [Read more…]

Foiled Again!

by Daniel Hudson, UVM Extension Agronomist

It has happened to us all — plans were coming together beautifully and then one trifling detail derails the whole operation. You get to the deer stand on opening day of hunting season and you realize that you left the ammunition (and/or lunch) on the roof of the truck – before you left home. Or, you get halfway to the lake for a rare and highly valued fishing venture with eager youngsters and a quick glance in the review mirror reveals that (for whatever reason) the boat is not there. Years later, you laugh (or not). [Read more…]

Diversity and success at raw milk micro dairy

CN-MR-3-WOTTON-FARM_02221by Tamara Scully

At Wotton Farm, in Ossipee, NH farmers Joel and Kathey Wotton operate a raw milk micro dairy. They milk twice each day, bottling the raw milk and separating the cream to make butter, aged cheeses and yogurt. These products are sold directly to the consumer, either from their farm stand, or at the farmers’ market. “I usually make cheese one or two times per week, butter one or two times per week and yogurt once per week. Then we have a market one day a week,” Kathey Wotton said, “we also make time to help customers, so when a customer arrives we go out to the farm stand.” [Read more…]