Blog Category: Business

Getting Started with Holistic Management

Posted by Dana Penrice on January 28, 2017

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Adapted from Dana Penrice and Ted Chastko’s Intro to Holistic Management presentation at the YA Kelowna and Vancouver Island Winter Mixers. The nature of managing natural systems requires that we create farms and farm businesses that are adaptive. The challenge is that farming is complex and things are always emerging and evolving and we need to be able to adapt. In other words, we need to fit our skills capacities, resources to the context of threats, challenges and opportunities in which we’re working.  As farmers, on a typical day, any number of ideas, questions and thoughts run through our head in a … Continue reading Getting Started with Holistic Management

Lessons Learned: Graham Bradley and the Gabriola Food Hub

Posted by Kristen Nammour on January 26, 2017

Graham Bradley races by on his red electric cargo bike delivering produce for the Gabriola Food Hub

Name, Farm, Location? Graham Bradley, 40×40 Farm, the Gabriola Food Hub, and I have been very involved at Good Earth Farm.  All of these businesses are on Gabriola Island, BC. What were your goals for this season and how did you work to achieve those? My main goals take form in two mottos: ‘work to learn’ and ‘don’t stop’. ‘Work to learn’ comes from something I read from Curtis Stone (an urban farmer from Kelowna who played a role in inspiring me to become a farmer). The full quote is “Work to learn and not to earn.” Often businesses lose money in … Continue reading Lessons Learned: Graham Bradley and the Gabriola Food Hub

January 28-29: SHAWNIGAN LAKE, BC – Young Agrarians 4th Vancouver Island Winter Farmer Mixer

Posted by Moss Dance on January 23, 2017

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Join us for two days of workshops for small-scale, ecological farmers and farmers-to-be on Vancouver Island. Dive in to amazing networking opportunities and skills-sharing with experienced farmer facilitators who are ready to help you grow your farm business. We’ve got workshops on everything from farm business planning to holistic management and livestock to crop planning, land access, and more! Are you farm-curious, or thinking about becoming a farmer? JOIN US! Everyone is welcome! When: Saturday, January 28 – Sunday January 29, 2017 Where:  Camp Pringle, Coast Salish Territory Camp (Shawnigan Lake), 2520 West Shawnigan Lake Rd, Shawnigan Lake B.C. V0R 2W3 Cost: Our updated price is … Continue reading January 28-29: SHAWNIGAN LAKE, BC – Young Agrarians 4th Vancouver Island Winter Farmer Mixer

Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: ‘Hawthorn Creek Farm’

Posted by Kristen Nammour on December 14, 2016

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Hi, this is Laticia Chapman checking in with YA Business Mentorship Blog #2. I’m going to freestyle it, because my year diverged wildly from my expectations circa last January. I’ve just passed my first anniversary living at my family farm in Tarrys, BC, between Castlegar and Nelson in the West Kootenays. We haven’t settled on a name in any legal sense, but ‘Hawthorn Creek Farm’ is a strong contender. So let me say right off the bat that you’d have to call this season a #farmfail for me, at least in a business sense. My focus for this mentorship was … Continue reading Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: ‘Hawthorn Creek Farm’

Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Duck Creek Farm

Posted by Kristen Nammour on December 12, 2016

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1. Name, Farm, Location? Emma Holmes, Duck Creek Farm, Salt Spring Island. I stepped in as farm manager for my friend Eland Brontstein, who took a year to farm in Australia and be with his lovely fiancé. 2. What were your goals for this season and how did you work to achieve those? Explore farming as a career option, get experience in all of the skills related to farming (marketing, finances, flame weeding, etc.), and create a positive intern experience 3. Did you meet your goals / Did it work out? I learnt a lot! It allowed me to try … Continue reading Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Duck Creek Farm

Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Merville Organic Growers’ Co-op

Posted by Kristen Nammour on December 10, 2016

Merville Organics - Robin Market

1. Name, Farm, Location? Arzeena Hamir & Neil Turner (Amara Farm), Moss Dance, Russell Heitzmann & Robin Sturley (Ripple Farm), Kira Kotilla (Kloverdalen Farm) and Calliope Gazetas. Together we are Merville Organic Grower Co-op, in Courtenay, BC. 2. What were your goals for this season and how did you work to achieve those? Our first year working together as a co-op was very exciting and we made a lot of progress. We all run our own farms as well so there were still plenty of important things that we just didn’t have time to work on in our first year. … Continue reading Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Merville Organic Growers’ Co-op

Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Plenty Wild Farms

Posted by Alyssa Belter on December 08, 2016

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We are Alyssa Belter & David Tanner of Plenty Wild Farms in Pemberton, B.C. Our mentor for the Young Agrarians Business Mentorship Program was Chris Bodnar of Close to Home Organics. Our original goal for this mentorship was to develop two business plans – one for a livestock/dairy operation and the other for a cheese-making operation – to see if either would be viable and at what scale. Using a template and list of questions we formulated with Chris, we began our research on the livestock/dairy operation – gathering information from online sources, reading books and contacting established farm operations in … Continue reading Business Mentorship – Lessons Learned: Plenty Wild Farms

Jan 11: AIRDRIE, AB – Closing the Gap: Creating a More Profitable Business

Posted by Dana Penrice on December 01, 2016

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Registration deadline: Friday, Dec. 2nd This workshop will introduce you to the concept of continuous improvement, a holistic approach to identify sources of waste and overcome specific challenges in your business. It is the start of a journey towards increased business and operational efficiency. Learn how to: maximize your employee asset base establish a preventative maintenance program incorporate the latest technology create a culture of continuous improvement deliver value to your customers What’s in it for you? reduce inefficiencies in your business add value from field to market increase business profitability potential for one-on-one business coaching with an industry expert … Continue reading Jan 11: AIRDRIE, AB – Closing the Gap: Creating a More Profitable Business

BC Business Mentorship Network – Apply Now!

Posted by Kristen Nammour on October 18, 2016

grow your farm - business skills for farmers - apply to the young agrarians business mentorship network

Ready to Grow Your Farm Business? Are you a young (or young at heart) animal or vegetable producer living in British Columbia? Are you operating a farm and are looking for guidance in continuing to grow your business? Young Agrarians is excited to be offering a third season of the BC Business Mentorship Network! This program pairs new and seasoned farmers together to cultivate the skills for running ecologically sustainable and financially viable businesses. Mentors work with you to analyze your operations and lay the groundwork for your farm’s business growth. What You Get! As a participant in this program you will receive 35-40 hours of one-on-one mentorship … Continue reading BC Business Mentorship Network – Apply Now!

November 8: VERNON, BC – Growing Your Farm Business Workshop

Posted by Moss Dance on October 11, 2016

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Join us for a full day workshop and start growing your farm business from the ground up!  Learn about growing into better marketing, human resources and loans for your farm with Clint Ellison and Rob Short. This workshop is delivered in partnership with Community Futures North Okanagan Details NOVEMBER 8, 9 AM – 4 PM Community Futures Vernon – 3105 33 St –  3rd Floor Community Boardroom COST: $20 REGISTRATION: click here Agenda Clint Ellison, AGRI 9:00 AM – 12:00PM business strategy marketing strategy production economics human resources financial management social responsibility succession planning business structure risk management * In addition, explore possible definitions … Continue reading November 8: VERNON, BC – Growing Your Farm Business Workshop