eNews August 2011

Don’t miss CFSA’s awesome new video at !

In this edition:

Upcoming Events –

High Country Farm Tour (THIS WEEKEND!)

Eastern Triangle Farm Tour and the Know Your Farms Charlotte Area Farm Tour NxLevel® for Agricultural Entrepreneur Workshops

Sustainable Ag Conference and Local Foods Feast!

Fall Transplanting Tips

Expert advice from CFSA’s Organic Initiative Coordinator, Karen McSwain

Important Survey:

NC Egg Law Survey

CFSA Program Spotlight

CFSA Scholarships for Beginning Farmer and Ranchers

CFSA’s EQIP Webpage Helps Farmers Apply For Conservation Grants (EQIP-OI)

CFSA’s Internship Referral Service – Post your Fall internships now!


Upcoming Events:

CFSA is a proud sponsor of:

Blue Ridge Women In Agriculture’s High Country Farm Tour 

Aug. 6-7, 2011- THIS WEEKEND!

Blue Ridge Women in Agriculture (BRWIA) hosts the 2011 High Country Farm Tour August 6th and 7th from 2-6 pm. Farms in Watauga, Ashe, Wilkes, Avery, and Alleghany counties are participating. Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in wine and cheese tastings and watch demonstrations of fiber arts, worm composting, mushroom production, and more! Bring a cooler and an appetite; a variety of vegetables and fruits, meat, eggs, artisan cheeses, herbs, mushrooms, honey, molasses, preserves, cider, cut flowers, fiber products, cookbooks, and homemade soaps and lotions will be available for purchase.

Tickets admit the passengers of one vehicle to all farms on both days – $25 in advance or $30 if purchased at a farm, or pay $10 per farm.

Visit www.brwia.org  for more information!

10-week Business Planning Course – Local Farm/Food System Entrepreneurs 

Starting Aug. 22, 2011 in Greenville, SC

Clemson University’s Institute for Economic and Community Development, the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, Clemson Regional Small Business Development Center, and BizBuilderSC are offering NxLevel® training for agricultural entrepreneurs in the Upstate, beginning August 22nd, 2011. This ten week program offers farmers and food entrepreneurs the tools and resources to create and implement a plan for growth and success.  NxLevel® for Agricultural Entrepreneurs will target entrepreneurs interested in cultivating a stronger local food system and is appropriate for urban/rural farmers, food artisans, chefs, value added business owners, those involved in food media, agri-tourism, processors, local market owners, etc.

This program is designed to help entrepreneurs hone the skills needed to create, manage and/or grow successful businesses. NxLevel® is a product offered through BizBuilderSC. Experienced entrepreneurs present the programs and guest speakers specializing in the topic for the session supplement their knowledge.

The ten week course is comprised of 10 sessions that will ultimately provide food entrepreneurs with tools needed to build successful businesses.  Topics include:

Take Stock of Your Resources

Basic Equipment Required: Planning and Research

The Legal Terrain

Manage from the Ground Up

Plant it, Grow it, MARKET IT!

Reap the Benefits-Marketing Strategies

Get Your Budgets in Line

Analyze THESE: Cash Flow and Financial Statements

Cultivate Your Money Resources

Harvest Your Future

Tuition is $195 for the complete 10-week course, or save $50 by registering two weeks in advance for only $145!

> Interested entrepreneurs may sign up for the program by visiting BizBuilderSC.com or call 864-656-2569 or email Devin Swindall at the Clemson Institute for Economic and Community Development with questions.


CFSA’s Eastern Triangle Farm Tour

Sept. 17-18, 2011

Mark your calendar for our biggest Eastern Triangle Farm Tour yet! There will be 25 farms in all, including 5 new farms!  Tour highlights: great urban farms and gardens, the state’s newest farmstead goat creamery, honey, herbs, baby pigs and lots of happy livestock, native bird and beneficial insect habitat demos, hayrides, mushrooms, wool, rice and so much more! We will also have backyard chicken demonstrations and other special surprises.  Look for a kick-off celebration at the new north Raleigh Whole Foods! As always, we appreciate Whole Foods Market for their generous support of the tour. And we thank all the wonderful farms that open their doors to us.

> For more information and to buy your ticket online, visit: /etft2011.shtml

Know Your Farms Charlotte Area Farm Tour

Sept. 17-18, 2011



Sustainable Ag. Conference

Nov. 11-13, 2011 in Durham, NC


> Register Now! The Early bird rate flies away Aug. 20th


The top 5 reasons why you don’t want to miss this conference:

  • The biggest names in sustainable agriculture today

We’ve assembled cutting-edge sessions on horticulture, livestock, soils, mushrooms, permaculture, bees, food, and more taught by our best local experts, including: Will Hooker, Chuck Marsh, Andrea Reusing, Ken Dawson, Rob Bowers, Daniel Parsons, Tony Kleese, and Debbie Roos.  And we are bringing in amazing talent from around the country:  Ross Conrad (VT), Greg Judy (MO), Ellen Polishuk (VA), Paul Wiediger (KY), Guy Jodarski (MN), Kristina Hubbard (CA) and Brian Snyder (PA). Not to mention our amazing keynote: Joan Dye Gussow, author of the bestselling “This Organic Life.”  She’s a legend in the local, organic movement.

> Check out the full conference schedule at: https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/sac11_schedule.shtml


  • Hands-on workshops and unbeatable farm tours

Friday’s pre-conference is jam-packed with skill-building workshops and farm tours that will inspire farmers and foodies alike.  Visit Lee Calhoun’s amazing apple orchard; taste the brew at downtown Durham’s “farm-to-suds” Fullsteam Brewery; learn from experienced farmers on the Sustainable Fruit and Vegetable Tour or on the Livestock and Farm Animals Tour; or get your new farm off to a great start from what you learn from the experts on the Beginning Farm Tour.  Or, choose from hands-on workshops in organic certification, mob grazing, mushrooms, organic growing, livestock health, permaculture, policy and more!

> Learn more: https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/sac11_preconference.shtml


  • A once-a-year chance to network with people who are as passionate about local food and organic farming as you are!

The theme of this year’s conference is Local and Organic: Together We’re Growing!  This conference is especially designed to bring together farmers, gardeners, foodies, advocates – everyone who is passionate about creating a healthy, sustainable food and farm future.

  • Amazing, Local Organic Food

This year’s conference takes place in Durham, North Carolina.  Durham was recently heralded by the New York Times as one of best 37 places in the world to visit in 2011 because of its food scene.  What better way to re-establish connections with your farm and food friends, and make new ones, than over a plate of delicious food at a Durham eatery, or check one of amazing farm to fork restaurants in Chapel Hill, Raleigh and the rest of the Triangle.  And as always, we put our ideals on your plate with fantastic local, organic food at the conference meals and not-to-be-missed local foods reception.  And, You won’t want to miss this year’s Local Foods Feast  – featuring world-renowned local food advocate, Joan Dye Gussow!

> https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/sac11_extras.shtml#meals

  • You could qualify for a scholarship to attend the conference for FREE!

Are you a new or beginning farmer?  We’ve got a scholarship for you!

Are you an extension agent, NRCS or CEFS?  There’s a scholarship for you, too!

>  For more information: /sac11_support.shtml


For more details on the CFSA Conference, visit: https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/sac11.shtml

Local Foods Feast

Nov 11, 2011 in Durham, NC

The Local Foods Feast promises to be a grand event attracting 800 people – a great way to connect to farm and food friends. We’ll put our ideals on your plate with fantastic local, organic food. The evening features Joan Dye Gussow, the “matriarch of the local food movement,” who will get us thinking together about what it means to defend real food.  She inspired Michael Pollan and we’re sure she will inspire you.

The Local Food Feast is a part of the Sustainable Ag Conference, but if you can’t make it to the full conference, you can register just for the Feast!  Or, you can become a Local Foods Feast Sponsor with a gift of $250 or $500. Come away with innovative ideas, new friends, and the satisfaction that your gift is supporting farmers, entrepreneurs, activists and educators in creating a sustainable, healthy farm and food future.

Sponsorships start at $250, and include Local Foods Feast tickets and CFSA membership. “Pollinator” sponsorships include conference registration and scholarships for young farmers. Email Alice Alexander or call her at 919-824-4799.

For details on other sustainable ag events – and to post your own events – visit: https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/events.shtml

Important Survey

NC Egg Law Survey

Do you raise laying hens in North Carolina? If so, you are probably familiar with the state’s Egg Law, which imposes standards for grading, labeling and marketing eggs.  The Carolina Farm Stewardship Association is conducting an evaluation of the law to identify ways to balance regulatory burdens on small farms with the need to ensure public health and orderly markets.  To develop information for that evaluation, we are asking small-scale NC egg producers to complete a survey.  Your information will be kept confidential and results of the survey will only be reported in aggregate form.  If you are an egg producer marketing your own eggs on the farm, at farmers markets, to local retailers and restaurants, or to other local foods venues, please take a couple of minutes to respond to this short, 15-question survey.

You can access the survey here, http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/QN2L79X.

If you have any questions about the survey, please contact Shivaugn Rayl.

CFSA Program Spotlight


Scholarship application deadline is Sept. 3, 2011

The Beginning Farmer and Rancher Scholarship program is designed to give new and beginning farmers and ranchers a low-cost opportunity to participate in Carolina Farm Stewardship Association’s (CFSA) Sustainable Agriculture Conference Nov. 11-13, 2011 in Durham, NC .

The Sustainable Agriculture Conference is an unparalleled opportunity for beginning farmers to learn how to be successful in their sustainable farming enterprises.  The conference has special programming for beginning farmers on basic farm planning, marketing, how to avoid common startup pitfalls, and applying for grants and loans for farmers.  Other conference workshops cover cutting edge issues in sustainable agriculture, including organic weed and pest control, plant diseases, soil fertility, heritage livestock, food safety and processing, and direct marketing.  All of it is essential information for new farms to thrive.

Scholarship recipients will be eligible to attend all regular conference activities, beginning with the dinner and evening program on Friday, Nov 11, and including all workshops, plenary sessions, meals and networking sessions taking place on Saturday, Nov. 12 and Sunday Nov. 13. The scholarship does not cover the pre-conference workshops and tours held on Nov. 11, or travel & lodging costs.  The value of this scholarship totals $300.
The scholarship does not cover the pre-conference workshops and tours held on Friday, Nov. 11, but all scholarship recipients will be eligible to attend these activities at discounted CFSA member rates.

Learn more about conference speakers and workshops.

Download the 2010 Conference brochure (.pdf!).

Scholarship Eligibility:

Up to 40 scholarships are available.  For purposes of this scholarship program, a new or beginning farmer or rancher is defined as an individual who:

– Has not operated a farm or ranch, or who has operated a farm or ranch for not more than 10 consecutive years.  This requirement applies to all members of an entity,

– Will materially and substantially participate in the operation of the farm or ranch.  Material and substantial participation requires that the individual provide substantial day-to-day labor and management of the farm or ranch, consistent with the practices in the county or State where the farm is located

This scholarship is for individuals who live in North or South Carolina.

CFSA encourages minority farmers to take advantage of this scholarship.  Fourteen of the 40 scholarships are reserved for minority farmers.

Scholarship Requirements

Scholarship recipients will be required to:

– attend one of the two Basic Farm Planning workshops held during the conference.


– cover the cost of their own breakfasts, lodging and travel expenses.  For more information about lodging options, click here.

The scholarship will pay for the full cost of conference registration, covering all activities from the opening of the conferenceon Friday through the close of the conference at 12:30 on Sunday.  Recipients are responsible for any meals not included in the registration fee, travel, and lodging.
Scholarship Application Deadline:

The deadline to apply for this scholarship is Sept. 3 , 2011 .

Scholarship recipients will be notified of award decisions by Sept. 23, 2011.
To Apply for the Scholarship, please complete the scholarship application and email to Cheryl Ripperton Rettie. Please put Beginning Farmer Scholarship in the subject line of your email.

Applications can also be submitted by postal mail; send your completed application to:


c/o Beginning Farmer Scholarship

PO Box 448

Pittsboro, NC


Download Scholarship Application (.pdf)

Download Scholarship Application (Word Document)

For More Information:


Phone –  919-542-2402
This scholarship program is made possible by a grant from National Institute for Food and Agriculture and the National Center for Appropriate Technology, and we are grateful for this support.

CFSA’s EQIP Webpage Helps Farmers Apply For Conservation Grants (EQIP-OI)


Through the Organic Initiatives Program, CFSA has been working with the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) in both North and South Carolina to assist in the implementation of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Organic Initiatives (OI). This program provides cost share assistance for the implementation of conservation practices that address resource concerns on organic or transitioning agricultural lands. If you are interested in learning more about this program visit /eqip.shtml or contact Karen McSwain.

CFSA’s Internship Referral Service

Post your Fall Internships NOW!


CFSA’s NEW on-line Internship Referrral Service connects sustainable farms throughout the Carolinas with aspiring farmers looking for hands-on learning opportunities.

CFSA Member Farmers: Post your NC and SC internship openings for free.

Students: Find your dream farm internship in the Carolinas!

Post Your Farm Internship Openings:  http://bit.ly/exw1I4)

Not yet a CFSA member? Join online (www.carolinafarmstewards.org/membership.shtml) to take advantage of our Internship Referral Service – just one of many member benefits!

For more information, please contact Diana Vossbrinck.


Fall Transplants

by Karen McSwain, CFSA Organics Initiative Coordinator

It took a number of years of head scratching to finally figure out how to start fall seedlings when it is 90 degrees out.  After I finally figured it out I threw in the hoe and got a desk job at CFSA! But I did learn a few tricks that helped those cool season crops survive the summer’s heat. The first was to germinate the seedlings in the shade.  The second was to overhead irrigate the flats 2-3 times a day. The first reason for this is obvious; soil in seeding trays dries out pretty quickly when it is one hundred degrees. The second reason is that changing water from a liquid to a gas (evaporation) requires energy (heat) which in turn cools the surface of the seedlings and the air around them. Happy fall planting!

CFSA Blog on Short Summer Vacation

Avid readers will notice that our blog is looking much less glamorous these days. Sadly, when our website was hacked, we had to remove all the fancy bells and whistles from the blog. Stay tuned for a remodel, but for now, we are taking a short summer break from the blog. Check back in Sept! https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/blog/


Connect with CFSA – Join us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/carolinafarmstewards) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/carolinafarm) or check out our blog (https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/blog/)!


Share your News– Got a bright idea for a newsletter article or an upcoming event you’d like to publicize on the website?  E-mail Amy.

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