Farmers and ranchers are coming from all over the West Coast to gather in Grass Valley February 9 -11 for Sierra Harvest’s 2018 Sustainable Food and Farm Conference. Over 500 farmers, foodies and homesteaders will come to learn first-hand from local and national experts in the sustainable food and farming movement, tour sustainable minded farms in Nevada County, make connections to strengthen their farm businesses, upgrade their home garden practices and enhance their organic and sustainable food production.
The conference features a full day of national heroes from the sustainable food movement on Saturday, February 10. Internationally recognized and outspoken rancher Joel Salatin,
author of 10 books and featured in the New York Times bestseller Omnivore’s Dilemma, draws from a lifetime of farming and ranching to inspire profitable, local and regenerative farming systems. Elizabeth and Paul Kaiser, award winning farmers at Singing Frogs Farm in Sonoma County who have developed a highly intensive, no-till, ecological management system that increases soil fertility, reduces water use, and generates over $100,000 per acre in sales. Daphne Miller MD, a family physician, researcher and author of Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up – describes the connections between health and local, organic food, and explains why she prescribes fresh local veggies and farm visits to her patients.
Local experts take the stage on Sunday, February 11, and participants can craft their own curriculum, choosing from 20 food and farm workshops. Topics include something for everyone – season extension, managing and restoring ponds, permaculture, organic pest management, agri-tourism, cooking with whole animal and more.
The Sustainable Food & Farm Conference, first developed in 2010 by local farmers, is designed to support farmers, ranchers, homesteaders, and gardeners to adopt innovative, sustainable practices that promote nutrient dense food and a healthier environment. Sierra Harvest, a local nonprofit that educates, inspires, and connects families to fresh local food, took over the management of the conference in 2016, but local farmers and ranchers continue to be involved in planning the curriculum each year.
“The quality of education being offered here in our rural community is quite phenomenal” says Rachel Berry, Conference Manager. “Between the national experts we bring in, and the local experts in the organic farming movement we have access to in Nevada County, this conference features some of the best education of its kind. People leave ready to implement new skills and strategies on their own farm or garden, and I’m inspired by all the stories I hear about how this education has benefited so many of our local farmers.”
Ticket prices are kept relatively low to make this education more accessible to the Nevada County community. In addition, discounts are available to farmers and ranchers. Plus, if you purchase your ticket by February 6, you get a free lunch at the conference, so don’t delay!
More About the 8th Annual Sustainable Food & Farm Conference
Friday, Feburary 9: Nevada County Farm and Ranch Tour; Mushroom Cultivation Workshop at Tumbling Creek Farm; AgTech Micro Conference at Nevada County Tech Connection.
Saturday, February 10: Keynote speaker presentations; Food & Farm Expo; Evening Food & Farm Mixer at Old Republic Brewery
Sunday, February 11: 20 Food & Farm Workshops with local experts
About Sierra Harvest
Sierra Harvest’s mission is to educate, inspire, and connect Nevada County families to fresh, local, seasonal food. Learn more at www.sierraharvest.org.