FARMINGTON, N.Y. — The Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York (NOFA-NY) is expanding its sixth annual Organic Dairy & Field Crop Conference to two days: Thursday and Friday March 16-17, with Friday’s focus on half-day intensive programs. The conference takes place at the Holiday Inn Syracuse/Liverpool, NY, 441 Electronics Parkway.
Keynote Speaker Jack Lazor, co-founder of Butterworks Farm, leads off the conference with his inspirational address: Building Butterworks Farm: Adapting to Changing Times. Lazor has been a pioneer in alternative management practices on his dairy, moving from small-scale production to a complete grass-fed management. Jack also will share his insights into carbon sequestration and the future of Butterworks Farm.
In addition, the conference will honor NOFA-NY’s 2017 Farmers of the Year, Michael & Gayle Thorpe, and the NOFA-NY Certified Organic, LLC staff will present on Transitioning to Organic Dairy Management. The staff will be available throughout the conference to answer questions on this important topic.
“NOFA-NY has been working to expand the Organic Dairy and Field Crop Conference,” noted NOFA-NY Education Team Director Bethany Wallis. “We are excited this year to provide even more programming for farmers, thanks to our great lineup of presenters. We welcome anyone interested in organic management; this is the place to learn. Our half-day intensive workshops cover all the basics. And the fantastic gathering of experienced farmers and industry professionals are more than willing to share their experience and expertise.”
Complete conference schedule and details are available on the website: http://bit.ly/2k9sAOU.
Thursday workshops include topics such as Buckwheat, On-farm Energy Audits, NY Organic Dairy Program Updates, Solutions to Challenges of Grass-fed Dairy, Resilient Farming in a Changing Climate, Small Scale Processing, Holistic Look at Minerals and Livestock Health, Organic Dairy Cull Cow Market, Calf Raising/Parasite Control, Strategies for Success with Organic Weed Management, and Building an Efficient and Profitable Herd: Genetics for Grass Based Dairy.
Friday, March 17 is focused on two half-day intensive workshops: Transitioning to Organic Dairy Management, and the Art and Science of Grazing. Participants will also learn about Farming with a Future, and Industrial Hemp: the Next Crop in New York’s Future.
The pre-registration deadline is March 7 but walk-ins are welcome. To register, call 585-271-1979 x1, online at: http://bit.ly/2ksFwBV or send a check to NOFA-NY, 1423 Hathaway Drive, Farmington, NY 14425. Full conference registration is $120, and includes lunch, dinner, and brunch. Thursday only is $65.00 (includes lunch); Friday only is $40.00 (includes brunch); Thursday dinner is $15.00. Children 12 and under are free. NOFA-NY members receive a 10% discount on registration costs (dinner excluded).
NOFA-NY is also looking for conference food donations, the wholesale value of which can be applied toward conference registration or taken as a tax-deductible donation. Food donors are listed in the conference program and in the banquet hall. To donate food, contact Paul Loomis at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (585) 271-1979 x515.
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