Director’s Message – November 2017

We hope you will join us for our Annual Meeting on November 16th. It will be held at Groundwork in New Bedford starting at 5:30pm and will give you a chance to network with farmers, farm businesses, our supportive SEMAP members, and the broader agricultural community. For our keynote, we will hear from Shelley Cardoos about the innovative work EforAll is doing in the Southcoast region.  EforAll is an innovative accelerator program for small businesses and nonprofits providing advice, mentorship and guidance to foster entrepreneurial growth.  Please RSVP so we can be sure you are well fed.  

Thanksgiving is fast approaching. I look forward to it for the celebration of both our historic, and living, food culture.  It’s the epitome our culinary heritage and a great opportunity to bond over good food. With just a little effort, most Thanksgiving dishes can be made with uniquely local ingredients (ahem, cranberry sauce anyone?).  Additionally, a trip to your nearest farmers market could yield local butternut squash, potatoes, turkey, and an incredible assortment of other options.  Check out our guide to local farmers markets and farm stands hereThe farmers need your support before the winter!

SEMAP is hosting two different training programs open to all farmers in Southeastern Massachusetts.  Through the Farmers Market Promotion Program established farmers can learn how to increase sales, customer traffic,  access training and technical assistance to engage new customers, and increase customer loyalty.  If you’ve been thinking of improving your outreach and marketing over the winter, this is a good opportunity to start.  We are offering marketing workshops, will hold a winter networking meeting, and provide 1:1 technical assistance for farmers in the region.  If you would like to take advantage of this opportunities, please sign-up here

We also have training opportunities for aspiring and developing farmers, foresters, and ranchers with less than 10 years experience.  Targeted for those just starting out, the Beginning Farmer Rancher Program provides training in finances, business planning and marketing for long-term sustainability.  We are able to provide heavily discounted rates to qualified participants who register. Sign-up here for the Beginning Farmer & Rancher Program (Foresters welcome too).

Have a happy and healthy holiday,

Karen Schwalbe
Executive Director

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