Calendar

  • Saturday, June 02, 2018 at 01:00 PM · 13 rsvps
    Farmers Hen House in Kalona, IA

    Organic Egg Production with Farmers Hen House

    Join Farmers Hen House and the Iowa Organic Association for an afternoon workshop in Kalona, Iowa. Learn about the history of Farmers Hen House, best practices for organic egg production, how their packing facility works. We will also visit a poultry farm that supplies eggs to the family business.

    Farmers Hen House began in 1997 with an Amish man's idea that producing organic eggs could be a way to keep small farms in the Kalona, Iowa area sustainable. The business began with just a few farms, but soon began to grow. Today, Farmers Hen House operates an egg grading and distribution facility in Kalona, Iowa. It's where eggs from our network of family farms are cleaned, graded and packaged. Our network includes mostly local farms, as well as farms in Bloomfield, Iowa and northern Missouri. Farmers Hen House’s facility is 100% solar powered.

    This event is made possible by a generous grant from the USDA's Risk Management Agency. 

    Space is limited! Please RSVP.

  • Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 01:00 PM
    Cotter Family Farm

    Transitioning to Organic with a Cover Crop Champion

    Join Tom Cotter and the Iowa Organic Association for this field day focused on roller crimping and crumbling rye, cover crops, and organic transition. A decades-long interest in cover crops has helped Tom care for his family farm. The Cotter farm is diverse, with fields of sweet corn, conventional crops, grazing acres, and experimental projects like interseeded corn, roller crimped rye, and warm season cover crops. This event will showcase the innovative work that Tom and his family have done to protect soil and water quality on their farm.

    Tom’s family has been farming in Mower County, Minnesota for 140 years. In 2016 Tom and his late father, Michael, were given the Outstanding Conservationists Award by the Mower County Soil & Water Conservation District. Tom has been working with cover crops on his family’s 1,100 acre farm for 19 years.

    This event is made possible by a generous grant from the USDA's Risk Management Agency. 

  • Saturday, July 14, 2018 at 10:00 AM
    Grassway Farm in Maynard, IA

    New Beginnings: Organic Transition on a Diversified Dairy Farm

    Spend a Saturday in July on a vibrant organic dairy farm in northeast Iowa. Scott and Gary Wedemeier, the Iowa Organic Association, and Practical Farmers of Iowa will host a field day focused on organic transition, medium-scale dairying, rotational grazing, on-farm innovation, and adapting to changing markets. Visitors will tour the dairying facility, walk through grazing paddocks, and see the infrastructure that the Wedemeiers have built over the last two decades to support their growing herd. Aaron Anderson, Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), District Conservationist for Fayette County, will speak on soil health and water drainage in relation to organic transition. This event will also serve as one of the Northeast Iowa Food and Farm Network's monthly gatherings.  

    Gary Wedemeier and his son, Scott Wedemeier, own and operate an 1,100 acre family farm in Maynard, Iowa. Scott is the third generation to farm this land. The Wedemeiers recently transitioned their herd and are now part of the Organic Valley Cooperative. The Wedemeiers also have a small number of sheep and pigs, maintain a natural wetland, and raise steers.

    Lunch is provided. Practical Farmers of Iowa will be collecting RSVPs later in the season. If you'd like to RSVP below, we will send you an email later in the season when PFI has their registration site up and running. Thank you!

    This field day is made possible through the Iowa Organic Association, Practical Farmers of Iowa, and through a grant from the USDA's Risk Management Agency.

  • Tuesday, July 24, 2018 at 09:00 AM · 1 rsvp
    Lehman Farm in Polk City, IA

    Dual Cropping Systems: An Introduction

    Spend a summer morning at the Lehman Family Farm in Polk City, Iowa. Aaron and Nicole Lehman have a 400-acre farm where they raise conventional and organic corn, soybeans, and hay. The Lehmans will talk about the challenges and opportunities of these dual farming systems. Curious about organic transition, organic record keeping, and conservation? We hope to see you there!

    Aaron and Nicole Lehman and their family raise corn, soybeans, oats, and hay in both organic and conventional rotations on their family farm. Aaron Lehman the president of the Iowa Farmers Union and is also a member of the Advisory Board of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University. Aaron and Nicole are both graduates of St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. Nicole Lehman has a Masters of Science in Microbiology and Immunology from Duke University School of Medicine. Until 2016, she was a senior research associate at DuPont Pioneer. Nicole and Aaron have two children, Jordan and Benjamin.

    This event is made possible by a generous grant from the USDA's Risk Management Agency. 

  • Thursday, July 26, 2018 at 09:00 AM · 1 rsvp
    Humble Hands Harvest in Decorah, IA

    In Her Boots: Farm Machinery

    On Thursday, July 26th, we'll tour Humble Hands Harvest and learn what machinery they use to get the job done. Hannah will show the inner and outer workings of her small tractor, we'll look at some other small engines and human-powered tools for farm work, and will talk about ergonomics and how to use our bodies hard without breaking them!

    Humble Hands Harvest is a 2-acre organic vegetable farm operated by Hannah Breckbill and Emily Fagan. The farm sells to local restaurants, at farmers markets, and through a CSA program. Hannah has been farming since 2009 and started Humble Hands Harvest in 2013; Emily joined the farm in 2017, when Hannah bought bare land to develop into a diversified farm from the ground up. They’re developing a perennial polyculture system, integrating nut and fruit crops and livestock, as well as their cornerstone of organic vegetables.

    This event is made possible in part through a generous grant from the USDA's Risk Management Agency. 

    The farm is just northeast of Decorah, Iowa. From Canoe Ridge Road, take Hidden Falls Road all the way to the end of that lane. Then you'll see the farm! 

    This is a partnered event with In Her Boots and MOSES. Registration is not yet available, but if you RSVP below, we will send you a message as soon as In Her Boots has their registration page up and running. Thank you!

     

  • Thursday, September 13, 2018 at 04:30 PM · 4 rsvps
    Red Earth Gardens in Tama, IA

    Growing Food Sovereignty with Red Earth Gardens

    The Iowa Organic Association is thrilled to invite everyone to Red Earth Gardens in Tama, Iowa for a late-afternoon field day. Red Earth Gardens is a tribally supported agriculture initiative at the Meskwaki Settlement. Come learn from local leaders about the innovative work that is being done at Red Earth Gardens! We will tour the gardens, talk about organic transition, visit a food forest, learn about the role of the gardens in the larger Meskwaki Food Sovereignty Initiative and share an evening meal together.

    Red Earth Gardens is the revenue-generating arm of the Meskwaki Food Sovereignty Initiative (MFSI). It’s primary business model is a TSA: Tribally Supported Agriculture. The garden is a venue for workforce development, providing meaningful employment to community members. Red Earth Garden is a sister program to other MFSI initiatives such as the elders garden and farm-to-school garden. Red Earth Gardens will transition to organic in 2018.

    This event is made possible in part by the USDA's Risk Management Agency.