Relationships and learning are at the heart of of everything we do here at Groundswell. Through strong networks, beginning and established farmers can provide each other with support and guidance as they continue to produce an edible bounty in the Finger Lakes. Our networks provide a platform for local farmers to come together to learn from each other, problem solve and build lasting friendships.
Finger Lakes C.R.A.F.T. (Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training) brings together established and aspiring farmers to share support and information about maintaining a farm business. CRAFT meets monthly throughout the growing season at one of several CRAFT Mentor Farms to learn about each farm operation, ask lots of questions, and share knowledge, while networking with each other.
Finger Lakes Orchard eXchange (FLOX) is a brand new farmer-to-farmer learning network for beginning and experienced orchardists. Organized by the participants in Groundswell’s 2014 course in Holistic Organic Orchard Management, FLOX meets monthly at area orchards to discuss production, marketing and management challenges, with a focus on organic and holistic systems.
The Cooperative Farming Network supports the development of cooperative models for farm business ownership, management, and business transfer. Utilizing monthly gatherings, online discussion through an email list-serve and occasional workshops, participants are able to build relationships with others interested in cooperative business models, while sharing valuable information.
The Farmer-2-Farmer Business Support Network, run through Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County, supports peer-to-peer learning, information sharing, and community building among beginning and experienced farmers in the Central NY area. Farmer-2-Farmer meets monthly during the winter season. The meetings usually include a potluck supper and a short presentation by an experienced producer or agriculture professional, followed by lots of informal discussion on topics of interest to the group.