CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Women are a powerful and growing force in agriculture and Champaign-based non-profit The Land Connection seeks to showcase their prowess with a five-part field day series this summer. Each event will be held on a woman-led working farm and will focus on a skill or topic that the host farmer does best, exploring challenges uniquely faced by women farmers, and strengthening the Illinois’ women farmer community.
The field day series will kick off on Sunday, June 25, from 2-5pm with Deborah Niemann-Boehle at Antiquity Oaks in Cornell, IL. Deborah will provide a tour of her working farm, highlighting her production of heritage livestock including guinea hogs. The tour will be followed by roundtable discussions of topics selected by the attendees. This roundtable format provides a valuable opportunity for peer-to-peer learning and community building.
The subsequent four field days will take place on Sunday evenings, once per month, through October.
- July 30, 2-5pm; Wool fiber production and silvopasturing with Cathe Capel at Seven Sisters Farm in Sidney, IL
- August 27, from 2-6pm; Cut Flower Tour with Joan Jach at Old Town Flowers, Cara Cummings at Cara’s Garden, and Maggie Taylor, Holly Curia, and Liz Faermark at Delight Flower Farm in Champaign, IL
- September 24, 2-5pm; Fruit and herb production with Teresa Brockman of Sunny Land Farm in Eureka, IL
- October 22, 2-5pm; Season extension in vegetable production with Shea Belahi and Lorien Carsey at Blue Moon Organic Farm in Urbana, IL
Pre-registration is encouraged and costs $5 up to two-weeks in advance, and $10 after that. Register and find more information at http://thelandconnection.org/farmers/field-days-and-workshops/women-who-farm-field-day-series.
According to the 2012 USDA census of agriculture, women make up only 23% of Illinois farmers, lagging behind our neighbors Indiana at 28% and Missouri at 31%. This field day series will provide Illinois women farmers with the opportunity to connect, learn from, and support each other in this endeavor.
Farming is an incredibly challenging business. Women farmers face many of the same hurdles as their male counterparts: access to land, ability to borrow capital, finding markets for their products, weather and pests. But women farmers also face a set of unique challenges. Most farm equipment, hand tools, and workwear are engineered and designed with male physical proportions in mind. Women farmers also disproportionately bear social and family responsibilities.. Ingenious women farmers have found many solutions to these obstacles and this field day series provides an invaluable opportunity to share and to help women farmers thrive in this challenging industry.
About The Land Connection:
The Land Connection is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting farmland, training sustainable and organic farmers, and promoting a vibrant local food system.
Mallory Krieger, Farmer Training Program Manager
The Land Connection
206 N Randolph St., Suite 400
Champaign, IL 61820
— The Land Connection
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