Sackville, New Brunswick is buzzing with excitement as the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) prepares for their first ever Beginner Farmer Symposium on Monday, August 20th. This new initiative will celebrate the future of local organic agriculture with diverse and inspirational workshops for new and aspiring farmers in Atlantic Canada. The organization is expecting a full audience with over 100 participants, and a full trade show representing businesses and support services for those involved with organic farming.
The symposium will cover key topics for beginner farmers including innovative strategies for farming co-operatively and getting started with organic greenhouse production. Other sessions will cover more basic production techniques like raising organic livestock and building soil fertility.
Speakers will include a fantastic mix of regional farmers/specialists, and Daniel Brisebois of Tourne-Sol Co-operative Farm/Canadian Organic Growers, one of Canada’s leading billingual experts in organic agriculture. Other activities will include Yoga for Farmers with Leanne Laracey of Nava Yoga, The Small-Tools Show & Tell and Beginner Farmer Seed Swap. The day will conclude at Sackville’s historic Cranewood Estate with ACORN’s Beginner Farmer Mixer, an evening social featuring delicious local organic food, drinks and live music by Halifax group Dark After Dark.
“ACORN took initiative to create this event as a key motivator to provide education, resources and community for new entrant farmers in the Maritimes,” explains Lucia Stephen, ACORN Program Coordinator. ACORN Executive Director Theresa Richards adds, “With an average age of 58 in New Brunswick, it’s very inspiring to see the burst of interest from new farmers from across the region. It’s from the interest this event has garnered that there is a big future for small-medium scale organic enterprises.”
To register, please fill in the online registration form at www.acornorganic.org (also on Facebook). Please visit www.acornorganic.org for the full schedule, rates and registration information. All students, apprentices and ACORN members receive a discounted pass.
For payment and event inquiries, please contact Alia Karim at firstname.lastname@example.org or toll-free at 1-866-322-2676.
All proceeds support the development of ACORN’s Grow A Farmer Apprenticeship and Mentorship Program–a new program offering comprehensive curriculum-oriented education and on-farm community building activities for new entrant organic and transitioning farmers. This program will begin applications towards the end of 2012, and will be the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada. Stay tuned to www.acornorganic.org for full details.
ACORN would like to acknowledge the support of the NB Agricultural Council, Agri-Futures NS, the PEI Adapt Council, the Territorial Farmers Association, Renaissance Sackville, Picaroons Traditional Ales, Growing Forward and Mount Allison University.
Since 2000, ACORN has the been the key organization for information on organic agriculture, eating organics, and connecting all the parts together in Atlantic Canada. The membership-based non-profit seeks to enhance the organic sector by coordinating education and networking opportunities for producers through to consumers. Learn more at www.acornorganic.org.