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Sustainable Agriculture Programs

Beginner Farmer Training Program (BFTP) -- This successful year-long program has trained motivated aspiring or transitioning farmers since 2009. The program provides both classroom instruction and shoulder-to-shoulder on-farm training for beginning and transitioning sustainable farmers in the Chesapeake region. Beginning in September 2012, the program is also a partner in the Maryland Collaborative for Beginning Farmers, a three-year initiative supported by the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA.

Farming Education and Resources -- Future Harvest CASA presents more than a dozen Field Days and Workshops on topics that help farmers be more sustainable in their growing practices and their business practices. Our annual Farming for Profit & Stewardship Conference every January provides an intensive two-day educational experience. Find information about these on our Education & Events page. You'll also find links on our website to a variety of informational web sites, opportunity listings, and resources for both beginner farmers and experienced farmers.

Resource List for Land Linking Farmers and Landowners -- Farmers and landowners alike need resources that will link them together for mutual benefit. Farmers may find that the purchasing cost of land is prohibitive and is a major barrier to getting started. At the same time, many landowners have viable land they are not farming and which they would like to see put into productive use. When landowners partner with farmers, both parties reap the economic, environmental, and personal benefits.

Amazing Grazing Directory -- The only directory of grass-based farms selling meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products directly to consumers, the print and online Amazing Grazing directory helps connect sustainable farmers with consumers and retailers looking for high-quality local products.

Chesapeake Foodshed Initiative -- Future Harvest CASA is leading this effort to bring together regional food system stakeholders, policymakers and funders in the first framework-building step toward developing a Chesapeake Foodshed Plan.

Policy Advocacy -- In addition to supporting the actions of the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition and others on national agricultural policy, Future Harvest CASA is working to formulate a strategy for the 2013 Maryland legislative session as a first step toward building more supportive environment for sustainable agriculture across the region.

Member and Consumer Outreach -- We keep in touch with members and the community via email communications, Facebook and Twitter. Visit our News & Information page for links to publications, an online bookstore, press releases and media coverage related to sustainable agriculture. We also have farming resource links and consumer resource links for more information.