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About Ecological Farming Association (EcoFarm) EcoFarm is a 40 year-old non profit organization based in Santa Cruz, CA. Our 2020-21 budget is $600,000, and we have two full time staff, three part time staff, and two to three seasonal part time contractors. EcoFarm’s primary program is our annual conference, which has historically taken place on the Monterey peninsula in January, with the 2021 version happening online due to the pandemic. Our mission is to nurture safe, healthy, just, and ecologically sustainable farms, food systems, and communities by bringing people...Read more
At EcoFarm Conference 2021, long-time organizational and social justice consultant Alfredo Vergara-Lobo invited us to be change agents in a discussion-based plenary that asked us to reimagine a more equitable world and to come up with ways to increase equity at EcoFarm, in the food/farm movement, and in our own communities. We have compiled these beautiful visions and commitments as a follow-up and reminder to those who participated. Equity was framed to include race, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, socioeconomic class, sexual orientation, abilities, and other...Read more
Join EcoFarm and the CCOF Foundation for a deep dive into the details of the organic labeling requirements for organic meat producers, including marketing strategies for organic livestock producers who don’t have access to certified organic slaughter facilities. Expect to learn about marketing tips from successful organic meat producers, organic labeling requirements from organic certification experts, and state-wide efforts in California to address the lack of certified organic slaughter facilities. More information: Organic regulations and labeling requirements are...Read more
Come learn about the latest research in small-scale, intensive, minimal-disturbance, ecological farming systems! Since 2017, the Community Alliance with Family Farmers has been working with Singing Frogs Farm, Hillview Farms, and others, to carry out on-farm research of the soil health impacts of their farming systems. At the same time, the Bowles Laboratory at UC Berkeley has conducted a 3-year experiment looking at the effects of key practices of these farming systems. After several years of soil health data collection, these two groups are now ready to discuss...Read more
Many questions enter into the compost purchase decision, such as: What is the source material? What contaminants might be present? How does one read the test information on C:N ratio, salts, microbes and metals? How will regulations such as AB 1826 organic waste recycling affect compost supply quality and quantity? and How much compost should you apply and when? This webinar will answer these questions and address other topics, such as how to report compost applications to the Regional Water Board, what to ask when searching for a supplier, and lessons learned from...Read more
The small-scale grain movement in California has been growing and gaining steam for years, but the shifting market demands in the last year have certainly infused the grain community with new energy. In this conversation, we will hear from four endeavors around the state that will give the farming community a window into the current climate for California grain. Zion Taddese, founder of Sheba Farms LLC, will describe her ambitious cross-border enterprise growing and processing teff both in California and in Ethiopia. Rob Barnett, farmer, community organizer and...Read more
To celebrate the vibrance of Spring and our EcoFarm community, Frey Winery & EcoFarm invite you to join us in a virtual wine tasting. The event will feature a behind-the-scenes peak at Frey’s organic and biodynamic grape growing practices. You also will learn the secrets of how the Freys bottle their certified organic wines without the use of added sulfites and hear illuminating stories from vineyard founder Katrina Frey, and vineyard manager Derek Dahlen. All proceeds go to support EcoFarm’s programming, including its Dirt First Conversation series . The tasting...Read more
Come learn about continued innovations in reducing/eliminating tillage in field-scale organic vegetable crops from the farmers leading the movement! Three California working farms--Phil Foster Ranches, Full Belly Farm, and Park Farming Organics--will report on their two years’ of research in commercial-scale, no-till organic vegetable production under Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG)-supported field experimentation. Topics covered will include cover-crop biomass digestion under plastic and weed barrier fabric, seasonal grazing trials, novel equipment, and...Read more
"Her presentation was just brilliant weaving equity in agriculture, health, food, farmers, farm workers and the environment into one whole cloth." "Rupa Marya is an amazing presence and speaker, she is a megaphone for the values our organization lives by." With rising temperatures, in the midst of a pandemic, surrounded by wildfires and social breakdown, the ways of interacting that have brought us to this moment are proving unhealthy, unsustainable and gravely dangerous. Drawing on data from the health sciences, history, ecology and soil science, physician, writer...Read more
So much changed this year but one thing remained constant: the power of coming together at EcoFarm Conference (albeit virtually), to empower, inspire, and open our hearts and minds to what may seem impossible. While this past month's EcoFarm Conference was different than our in person gatherings, we hope that you came away with new ideas, connections, and optimism in our shared work to reimagine our future in food and farming. Thank you to all who contributed to EcoFarm's scholarship program. Because of your generosity, we raised $21,000 which equated to 140...Read more

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