There are a number of ways to learn about organic production, each way catering to a different audience and resource need. This page provides links to various job boards, websites for volunteering opportunities and other educational avenues.
MOSES Job Board The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service has a job postings page where they’ve compiled job openings in sustainable agriculture located primarily throughout the Midwest.
ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture provides listings of apprenticeships and internships on farms throughout North America.
WWOOF is well known globally for connecting people throughout the world interested in gaining experience in organic farming. This is a great opportunity to learn about how organic farmers do things in other countries.
Farmer Training Programs
Michigan State University Organic Farmer Training Program A nine-month program with the MSU Organic Farm prepares participants to run small-scale, year-round farming operations. The OFTP is an opportunity for new or interested farmers, offering intensive instruction and hands-on management experience in organic production.
The program is designed to teach both production and management skills to prospective farmers in an environment where personalized goals and individual training are emphasized. It allows participants to engage in management of the Student Organic Farm, including production for the farm’s primary markets – community supported agriculture, an on-campus farm stand and sales to MSU campus dining services.
Applications for the 2017 season are available now.
To purchase university extension education materials (e.g., field guides, management documents, manuals, books and brochures) please visit their online stores:
- Michigan State University Extension bookstore
- Cornell University Cooperative Extension store
- Iowa State University Extension store
- Purdue University Extension store
Annual conferences in the area include: MI Family Farm Conference, Small Farm Conference, Organic Reporting Session, Upper Midwest Organic Conference (MOSES). These conferences are held in January through March.
Check out the listing of winter farming conferences on the ‘EVENTS‘ page
Participate in community organizations. Examples include:
Watching webinars with friends (make it a potluck) is a great, typically FREE way to learn about various topics of interest including soil health, pest and weed management, and managing employees. eOrganic offers many saved webinars that you can watch at a location with high-speed internet and at NO COST!
See the ‘EVENTS’ page for more listings of upcoming webinars.
Farmer to Farmer Podcasts
Chris Blanchard, long time farmer and educator, interviews a different farmer on each episode, talking about a range of topics ranging from weed control approaches to employment philosophies to marketing strategies.
MSUE Beginner Farmer Webinar Series
There are 59 recorded MSUE webinars spanning multiple topics including business, marketing, machinery, organic agriculture and pollinators.