Cultivating a sustainable local food system

By Joanna Green

Published in Tompkins Weekly

Let’s say you’re a young adult – or maybe a not so young adult – and you’re interested in learning about small-scale farming as a potential livelihood. Where can you go to find out what farming is all about and get the training you need to farm successfully?

Or let’s say you’re an individual or small business owner who just wants to play a role in building a strong, sustainable local food system in our community. How can you plug in and support the next generation of farmers and local foods businesses?

Join the Groundswell!

The Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming is addressing the need for hands-on training and education to support beginning farmers, urban market gardeners and other local foods entrepreneurs in the region. Groundswell has been spearheaded by a hard-working group of local foods boosters including farmers, community members, Cornell Cooperative Extension, and faculty and students from Cornell, Ithaca College and TC3.

To find out more about Groundswell’s groundbreaking (!) educational programs that is putting Ithaca on the map as a destination for high quality farm-based education go to our website at

An innovative partnership with TC3 – HAS BEGUN until the middle of July the blog will feature the experiences of participants in the practicum

Groundswell is partnering with the Environmental Studies Program at Tompkins Cortland Community College to offer a “Summer Practicum in Sustainable Farming and Local Food Systems.” This unique, 8-week course is geared for students, community members and professionals interested in learning more about sustainable agriculture, local food systems, and small-scale farming. Much of the teaching will take place at West Haven Farm at EcoVillage, as well as other farms, local food businesses, and organizations in the area.