FAIRLEE, Vt. — Vermont Grass Farmers Association (VGFA), in partnership with UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture will host the 23rd Annual Vermont Grazing and Livestock Conference on January 18 and 19 at Lake Morey Resort in Fairlee.
Grass-based livestock production has been the foundation of New England agriculture for centuries. Vermont’s terrain, soil, and available water support diverse and high quality forage for animal nutrition. The benefits of managing pastures well are numerous–healthy animals, productive soils, and clean water. However, pasture-based farms require thoughtful management to build systems that benefit the land while producing high quality products for consumers. The Vermont Grass Farmers Association and the UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture work together to offer professional development opportunities for livestock farmers and consumers around grazing and related issues.
The Vermont Grazing and Livestock Conference is filled with local, regional, and national speakers covering topics from grazing basics to dairy production to forage and soils. Attendees from past conferences say, “The organizers have done a great job finding interesting speakers from across the country. I feel renewed hearing new speakers with new perspectives.”, and, “Seemed like there was something for everyone at every session.”
What’s on the schedule for 2019?
Friday, January 18th will focus on direct marketing and business risk management. Charlotte Smith of 3CowMarketing will be featured, with her approach of Farm Marketing From the Heart, as well as local insurance agents and regulatory experts.
Saturday, January 19th will feature 12+ workshops followed by double keynote presentations. Our speakers are the husband and wife team of David Montgomery and Anne Biklé. Both are scientists and authors who speak about bringing our soils back to life and the valuable role biology plays in human and plant health.
David Montgomery, geologist and author of Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations, and most recently, Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life will lay out the historical roots of soil degradation and discuss practices farmers are using to increase their yields while using fewer purchased inputs resulting in a better bottom line.
Anne Biklé, science writer and biologist and co-author of The Hidden Half of Nature will dig deep into soil and mammalian gut microbiomes. She will share insights and discoveries about bacteria and other microbes and their profound influence on the health and well-being of crops, livestock, and people.
Join more than 350 farmers and agricultural resource providers from six Northeast states, representing a cross-section of the region’s livestock production. One-day and two-day tickets are available, or you may attend just the keynotes on Saturday afternoon. VGFA members receive special ticket prices. Conference registration is located at https://2019vtgrazelivestock.eventbrite.com.
–Vermont Grass Farmers Association
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