Advanced learning and on-farm networking with NAFDMA

C4-MR-3-NAFDMA 3by Emily Enger

They’re farmers. They’re growers. They’re businesspeople. They’re entertainers. When your job includes doing everything, often the vocabulary at your disposal is limiting. So now, they’re writers, as well, having coined a new term to describe what they do.

“We’re trying to train ourselves to say ‘entrepeneurial farmers,’” explained NAFDMA’s Director of Membership and Resources Virginia Schwarzenbach.

These newly-dubbed ‘entrepeneurial farmers’ make up the membership of the North American Farmers’ Direct Marketing Association (NAFDMA), a 501(c)3 Membership Association reaching throughout the United States and Canada. And when these busy folks are in the so-called “off-season” — the petting farms and corn mazes are shut down and the orchard is under frost — they get together for a lengthy, indepth, six day annual convention. This year it was held Jan. 31-Feb. 5 in Kansas City, MO and was titled “Makin’ Hey in the Heartland.” [Read more…]

Maine Agricultural Trades Show on farmers markets

by Terry Lynn Colligan
On Jan. 8, at the annual Maine Agricultural Trades show, Hanne Tierney of Cornerstone Farm in Palmyra, gave attendees an overview of her experiences being involved in four of Maine’s farmers markets.

Tierney said picking the markets that worked for their farm was, “a little like picking a tractor — little one, big one…” until she got the market that just worked well for their farm. [Read more…]

More than 8,000 cattlemen and women attend convention

CEWN-MR-Cattle convention21by Rebecca Long Chaney

NASHVILLE, TN — More than 8,000 Cattlemen and Cattlewomen arrived at the National Cattle Industry Convention to attend meetings, be inspired by speakers and special guests, enjoy the trade show and network with cattle friends from coast to coast and overseas.

Whether beef producers wanted to learn new trends in the industry by visiting the more than 300 exhibitors in the trade show or take in meetings and workshops, there was something for everyone in Nashville. The convention marks the largest annual gathering of the beef industry and included special meetings of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), American National CattleWomen (ANCW), as well as the Certified Beef Board (CBB). [Read more…]

Shearer Aaron Loux

CN-MR-3-Shearer 1by Laura Rodley

Veteran shearer Aaron Loux has helped teach shearing at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY for four years, and works shearing for shepherds with herds of one to 3000. He first attended Cornell’s shearing classes when he was a junior in High School. He lives a nomadic life, travelling to the farms where he shears, with his home base at his parents’ Busy Corner Farm in Cummington, MA. He served for two years as co-chair of the Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair. [Read more…]

The New England Farmers Union fourth annual convention

CN-MR-2-The New England 1by Sanne Kure-Jensen

The New England Farmers Union (NEFU) held its fourth annual convention “Celebrating our Agricultural Diversity: People, Practices and Products” in Newport, RI. Nearly 100 members attended the convention.

Ken Ayars, Rhode Island Division of Agriculture chief, thanked NEFU for its efforts on behalf of New England agriculture and warmly welcomed NEFU members to Rhode Island with its thriving agricultural sector. [Read more…]