Future Harvest to hold conference


December 18, 2005

Future Harvest, a Chesapeake alliance for sustainable agriculture, will hold its annual "Farming for Profit and Stewardship" conference Jan. 13-14 at the Four Points Sheraton in Hagerstown.

The conference will feature workshops, seminars, and a membership meeting and election of board members. Preconference seminars will be held from 10 a.m. to noon Jan. 13 on "Value-Added Products: How Am I Going to Sell All This Stuff?" and "Taking Research Into Your Own Hands."

The conference begins at 1:30 p.m. Jan. 13 with seminars on "Pheasant Hill Farm: Our Story" and "Small is (Not Necessarily) Beautiful: Rethinking Sustainable Agriculture Dogma Based on 17 Years of Growing Our Co-op."

The meeting and board elections will be held at 3:15 p.m., followed by a social and networking time and dinner.

An evening session will feature a "Farming for Profit Panel: Successful Farming Enterprises in the Mid-Atlantic Region."

Workshops are scheduled throughout the day Jan. 14.

Session I, 8:30 a.m.: "Tailgate Vendors Survival Guide," "Growing Heritage Breed Turkeys," "Sustainable Orcharding," "Growing High Tunnel Tomatoes in the Mid-Atlantic."

Session II, 10:30 a.m.: "Advanced Marketing," "Livestock Nutrition From the Ground Up," "Mechanical Weed Control in Vegetables," "Most Profitable Cut Flowers."

Noon: Lunch and keynote speaker, Vern Grubinger, director of the University of Vermont Center for Sustainable Agriculture, on "Towards Sustainablilty, One Bite at a Time."

Session 4, 2 p.m.: "Sustainable Forestry and Forest Products Cooperative," "Legal Realities on Your Farm," "Getting Started With Blueberries, Raspberries and Strawberries," "AGR: Lite for Your Farm."

Session 5, 3 p.m.: "Conservation Security Program: A Farmer's Perspective" (panel discussion), "Basics of Home Flocks," "Health and Biosecurity," "The Latest on Compost Teas," "Finding the Market That Fits Your Operation."

Rooms are available for those wishing to stay overnight. Reservations are required by Dec. 27. The cost is $65 a night.

Conference registration is $25, $15 for students, $40 for a family and $75 for a business or organization.

Information: 410-549-7878.

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