BFRDP Projects

Classroom and Field-based Training to Assist Beginning Farmers’ Entry into Organic Seed Production
[Progress Report]

Award Amount: $251,237
Grant Program: 2015 Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program Awards
Project Director: Micaela Colley
Organization: Organic Seed Alliance


  • Overview
  • Results
  • Materials
  • Delivery Area
  • Comments

Project Overview

Organic seed production represents a lucrative and growing specialty agricultural market. The specialized skill set required to produce high quality organic seed serves as a barrier to entry into this market. Beginning farmers need specific production and business knowledge in order to take advantage of this opportunity. This project is training beginning farmers in organic seed production through seed intensive workshops, written manuals, and by facilitating internships on established organic seed operations. The long term goals of this project are to a) increase the number of beginning farmers who grow organic seed, and to b) improve beginning seed producers' practices to increase their profitability, decrease their financial risk, and improve their conservation practices. To support these goals, this project has trained over 400 beginning farmers in organic seed production by a) providing a bilingual day-long organic seed intensive workshop and additional organic seed workshops at 3-day conferences in 2014 and 2016 and bilingual recordings post events, b) providing print and on-line copies of written manuals on organic seed production, c) supporting structured seed internships on seed farms, and d) conducting six webinars on seed production. These goals and objectives support BFRDP priority topics by providing beginning farmers with production, business, marketing, and conservation strategies. Our target audience includes limited resource beginning farmers, socially disadvantaged Latino beginning farmers, and immigrant and other farm workers. 35% of the budget is dedicated to reaching and serving this target audience. The project team has worked extensively with beginning farmers in the past, delivering multiple Organic Seed Growers Conferences, introductory seed production workshops, training manuals, and an online database linking organic seed producers with seed purchasers. 

Number of Participants: 1365


Promotional Materials

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Delivery Area

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