NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. — Rutgers Cooperative Extension (RCE) will present a new, urban-focused version of the popular Annie’s Project held in three locations, simultaneously, over the course of six weeks, one evening per week.
The training course, titled “Annie’s Project: Farming in New Jersey’s Cities and the Urban Fringe,” will be held simultaneously in Roseland, New Brunswick and Cherry Hill on Dec. 3, 10, 17 and Jan. 7, 14, 21, between the hours 6 – 9 p.m. Registration is currently open. Early bird registration is $125 until Nov. 3; registration is $150 from Nov. 4 to Dec. 2. Dinner will be provided at 5pm.
Financial assistance, provided by Farm Credit East is available to participants in need, who must first fill out a scholarship application.
The New Brunswick location is where speakers will give presentations that will be recorded and livestreamed to the Cherry Hill and Roseland locations, where local facilitators will lead discussions.
“As in the previous Annie’s Project programs, this workshop is designed to educate and train new and aspiring farm women and military veterans on risk management strategies and provide tools for successful business management,” says Robin Brumfield, extension specialist in farm management, Rutgers Cooperative Extension.
“In addition, this program focuses on topics within these areas of risk that present unique challenges to urban farmers,” she adds.
Participants will have access to invaluable tools to help sustain their farm business, including the expertise of keynote speaker Charlotte Smith, owner of 3CowMarketing.com and Champoeg Creamery in St. Paul, Oregon.
Smith is a successful farmer and businesswoman who offers an online marketing and training program that helps farmers learn marketing techniques to grow a successful business. Smith will also be the instructor for the Marketing class on December 3.
“New and aspiring farm women and military veterans will gain educational training on the essentials of preparing a business plan, considered a vital roadmap to success for any business,” says Brumfield. The women will also benefit from networking opportunities with their peers and other agricultural professionals.
Presentations on topics uniquely challenging to urban growers include “Accessing Land Through Short-term Lease or Purchase,” “Soil Quality,” “Contamination and Testing, Water Issues: Availability and Conservation,” and “Right-to-Farm Issues: Poultry Farming.”
For more information about the program, visit Rutgers Farm Management website. Material for this program is based upon work supported by USDA/NIFA under Award Number 2018-70027-28588 and the NERME Center.
–Robin Brumfield, Rutgers University