This past weekend AMI Senior Fellows and staff attended the Virginia Association of Biological Farming conference at Smith Mountain Lake. We spent the weekend amongst hundreds of organic farmers, policy makers, and activists attending workshops, socializing, and enjoying delicious locally grown food. The conference was a way for us to gain inspiration from the innovation of our neighboring farmers as we enter the upcoming growing season.
Some of the workshop targeted technical aspects of farming such as the ins and outs of cover cropping, organic pest management, row coverings, livestock management, and techniques of growing specific crops. Other talks were more conceptual, discussing topics like economic and ecological prosperity through permaculture, the importance of seed stewardship, and food policy.
farmers we are swimming upstream together, working against the challenges posed
by big agriculture. I was touched by the free flowing exchange of ideas amongst
farmers both new and seasoned, regardless of race, gender, or age. Together we
can push towards creative solutions and further innovation united in a common
goal rather than growing apart through competition.
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