Jan 21, 2020
Education, resources for small farms set for Michigan Family Farms Conference

Winter brings many opportunities for Michigan farmers to engage in conferences across the state that support their continuing education and brings them together around a common interest and fellowship. One such conference is the Michigan Family Farms Conference, which is celebrating 17 years of bringing education and resource opportunities to small and medium scale farmers in a setting that celebrates diversity, social justice and equitability in agriculture.

The 17th annual Michigan Family Farms Conference will be held Feb. 8,  from 8 a.m. -5 p.m. at the Kalamazoo Valley Community College Texas Township Campus, 6767 West O Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49003. Tickets can be purchased online.

This year’s conference theme is “Nurturing Resilient Farms – 2020 & Beyond” and the conference keynote, Pakou Hang, executive director emeritus of the Hmong American Farmers Association, will share her analysis of past social movements and what light they may shine on our understanding of the current troubles facing small family farmers. Conference attendees will also have the opportunity to attend six educational tracks to learn from some of the state’s leading experts on topics including:

  • Vegetable crop rotation
  • Managing farm stress
  • Farm labor
  • Industrial hemp
  • Intercropping
  • Beekeeping and native pollinators
  • Farm Bill programs and updates

View the full conference program.

A special Youth Education Session is also provided to encourage families to attend and kids ages five years and over will be treated to a fun day of hands-on activities related to agriculture.

Military veterans are eligible for discounted tickets to the event and can receive a discount code from by contacting Adam Ingrao, MSU Extension veterans’ liaison, at [email protected] or 951-237-5311.

As a key collaborator, Michigan State University Extension educators provide leadership through the conference planning process and expertise to support a diverse selection of educational content for conference attendees.

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