Table Talks (during Networking Luncheon)

Table Talks (during Networking Luncheon)

NEW! Table Talks during Networking Luncheon
Sign up onsite at registration-must have a ticket for Networking Luncheon

Table Talk 1: Creating On-Farm Habitat for Pollinators and Other Beneficial Insects
Do you have questions about how to establish habitat for pollinators and beneficial insects on your farm? Bring your questions along with maps of your farm, aerial photos, and any existing conservation plans you may have to this lunch-time Table Talk. UC Cooperative Extension and the Xerces Society are leaders in developing guide­lines and tools for establishing habitat on farms in California. We will discuss our tools that can assist farmers in planning their own pollinator and beneficial insect habitat restoration projects, and in accessing USDA conservation programs for financial assistance. Participating in Beneficial Insect Habitat Table Talks will give attendees a chance to receive intensive one-on-one advice.
Led by Jessa Kay Cruz, The Xerces Society, Sara Leon-Guerrero, UC Berkeley and Rachael Long, UCCE, Yolo County

Table Talk 2: Ability Solutions: Arthritis, Disability and Aging Farmers
Are you interested in learning about resources that can support farmers, ranchers, workers and their families who have an injury, disability, or illness that limits their ability to perform farm tasks? CalAgrAbility at UC Davis provides education and direct assistance to agricultural families living and working with limiting injuries, illnesses and disabilities. Discussion topics include: farming with arthritis; accessibility on farms; and how to create and locate assistive devices and ergonomic tools to help in performing farming tasks. Providing services to consumers who are non-English speakers will also be addressed.
Led by Esmeralda Mandujano, Community Health Representative, CalAgrAbility Program


Table Talk 3: The Realities of Small-scale Mixed Veggie, Fruit & Poultry Farming: Lessons from 22 years at “Hard Knocks U”
What better way to learn about owning and operating a small scale farming business than from the wisdom and knowledge of an experienced farmer! Please join Robert Ramming of Pacific Star Gardens to hear about all the trials and tribulations of starting a farming business and moving it toward financial sustainability. Robert will share their experiences in owning & operating a small-scale ($50,000-$100,000 annual sales; 10-40 acres) mixed veggie/fruit/poultry farm.  Started in 1994 with wholesaling – they then moved on to become a retail farm (u-pick, roadside stand, subscriptions, farmers markets).  Robert will discuss actual hard numbers from their 22 years (profits & losses, expenses, the intersection of inexperience with Murphy’s Law); stresses & benefits to marriage & family life; pros & cons of different marketing venues; employees; hours & effort & the unforeseen; finding partners.  “Why we have survived when so few others have (and why you can/should learn more from others’ mistakes rather than their successes)” is a key focus of this discussion.  Beginning farmers and those with very few years under their belt are encouraged to come with their questions.
Led by Robert Ramming, Pacific Star Gardens


Table Talk 4: Selling to Local Schools and Hospitals
In this clinic, Ben Thomas of the Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) will help farmers learn about the steps and resources available to enter purchasing relationships with institutions such as schools, colleges, and hospitals. With the recent increased demand for local food, CAFF has built a strong coalition of institutional partners from around the state who are interested in purchasing from smaller and mid-size growers.  This clinic will identify these opportunities and help break down the barriers that farmers face when entering into institutional markets. In addition to discussing examples of successful Farm to Institution relationships, CAFF will help farmers identify interested institutions in their regions.
Led by Ben Thomas, Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF)