SACKVILLE, N.B. – Staff at the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) have been busy with preparations as registrations fill for the organization’s second Beginner Farmer Symposium and Mixer, which will be held on Aug. 19, 2013, at Mount Allison University. This event is heralded as a celebration of the next generation of local organic farmers and features a busy schedule of critical educational and networking opportunities for those interested in the business and culture of organic production in Atlantic Canada.
The dynamic list of workshops, featuring both guest and regional speakers is now posted on ACORN’s Grow A Farmer website, and members of the organization are pleased to announce that representatives from the agricultural network, The Greenhorns, will be traveling from New York to participate this year.
Founded in 2007 by Severine von Tscharner Fleming, The Greenhorns is a non-profit organization composed of beginner farmers and a diverse group of collaborators “working to recruit, promote and support the new generation of young farmers in North America”. Their many initiatives involve coordination of avant-garde programming, video, audio, web content, publications, events, and art projects that increase the odds for success and enhance the profile and social lives of young farmers.
The Symposium will include a presentation by von Tscharner Fleming detailing the recent work and mandate of the Greenhorns, and is expected to be a highlight in the day’s proceedings.
“They (The Greenhorns) have had remarkable influence as a proactive, grassroots, non-profit organization supporting young farmers across North America through many creative and powerful means,” says Lucia Stephen, ACORN program coordinator, “Alongside a series of fantastic regional experts, we are very excited about their participation in this important event and hope that the information provided inspires and brings confidence to those considering a career in agriculture.”
In addition, the symposium will also feature a sold-out trade show, featuring Maritime-based agricultural businesses, organizations and support services for new entrants. The day will conclude with ACORN’s Beginner Farmer Mixer at Sackville’s historic Hammond House from 6-9 p.m. The evening social will feature a local organic BBQ, drinks, and live music provided by Maritime-based Willie Stratton and the Boarding Party.
The following day, Tuesday, August 20, ACORN is collaborating with the Black Duck Coffee House in Sackville for brunch from 8-11 a.m. Along with a delicious meal comprised of locally sourced organic food, beginner farmers will have the opportunity to meet with provincial industry experts for an informal Q&A to address all inquiries related to starting a farm.
For full details, including the schedule, workshop descriptions and registration information, visit growafarmer.ca/symposium/ (also featured on ACORN’s Facebook page). All students, farm-apprentices and ACORN members receive discounted rates to attend. As space is increasingly limited, so organizers are encouraging all interested participants to register now to ensure confirmation of attendance.
Based out of Sackville, N.B., the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) is a non-profit organization that promotes organic agriculture through programs, events and numerous resources. ACORN’s vision is to enhance viability and growth of the Atlantic Canadian organic agricultural community through a unified regional network. Working to facilitate information exchange and coordinating education for producers, consumers and everyone in between, ACORN promotes networking opportunities for all interested parties both regionally and nationally.