It’s hot and muggy in Pennsylvania. Time to take a break with
some fresh fruit and some refreshing news on finding local markets
and the capital to build your organic farming infrastructure.
There was a time when colleges and corporations could get unusual
food from exotic places or standard produce crops that were wildly
out of season, but had no option to buy from farmers in their county.
Since food-service pioneers have showed that breaking out of commodity
sourcing is a perk for their more demanding institutional clients,
early adapters have followed suit. It helps to have a driving force—and
food production—right on a campus that is primed for this
kind of innovation as Dayna Burtness at St. Olaf College in Minnesota
And there was a time when putting together a business plan that
depended on crop rotations for fertility and even modest organic
premiums to boost income would get a polite refusal from the local
bank and from the Farm Service Agency. Times are definitely
changing. The proven commercial viability of organic farming, showing
strength in sectors where conventional operations are not succeeding,
has made the FSA more confident about financing new and expanding
operations, and many offices are looking with new favor on carefully
scripted and well-researched organic plans. See how on-farm entrepreneurs
in Wisconsin are benefiting with FSA help.
Looking for a farm near you? Our Farm
Locator lets individuals and businesses find farms in any part
of the US or Canada selling food and farm products. To help us know
if our way of connecting food searchers with the food they want
is working as well as you want it to, we need you to talk to us
about it. You can help us create a better farmer service by completing
the user survey we’ve designed. We’ll reward you
with a Rodale Institute Book Store discount coupon for giving us
just a little piece of your mind.