Who is CISA?

Who is CISA?

Hear about what we do from local farmers and people we work with every day!

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Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) strengthens farms and engages the community to build the local food economy.

CISA has been working for over 25 years to build a stronger, more resilient, and more just local food system. We envision a local food system where farms are viable, working conditions are fair and just for owners and workers, the environment is respected, and locally grown food is available for all.

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Whats Happening?

Successful Value-Added Food Product Development for Farm and New Food Businesses: Managing Food Quality and Safety 2023

November 29 @ 9:00 am - 1:00 pm
Are you a farmer diversifying into value-added production or an entrepreneur developing new and exciting products? Do you have questions about how to integrate food safety and quality into the... more
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New Entry's Farm Business Planning Course

November 30, 2023 - January 18, 2024
In this course, you will learn how to: Create a mission and vision for your business Develop a budget and a plan to fund your business Create a marketing plan... more
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Making Food Fun with Quabbin Harvest

December 2 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Making Food Fun comes to the Quabbin! CISA and Quabbin Harvest team up with local farms to celebrate the late harvest season in Orange. The morning will be full of... more
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Opportunistic Gardening Tactics in the Time of Climate Chaos

December 2 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Homestead, mentor, and heirloom seed saver, Daniel Botkin, will tell stories and show slides illustrating key strategies and tactics which have served him for 28 years on his five acre,... more
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Exploring the Small Farm Dream (Fall Session)

December 5, 2023 - January 9, 2024
5-session course, typically offered on weekday evenings, using curriculum and workbook developed by the New England Small Farm Institute.  For those who are thinking about or in the planning stages... more
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Selling CSA Shares in NYC

December 5, 2023 - February 5, 2024
You’re invited! Join Farm Generations Cooperative, GrowNYC, and Just Food at one of four CSA workshops about CSAs in New York City. Hear from an experienced farmer and supporting organizations... more
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Fantastic Fungi movie screening and panel discussion

December 5 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Photo from Fantastic Fungi website   Join CISA for a movie screening and panel discussion of Fantastic Fungi! Tuesday, December 5th at 7:30pm  Buy tickets here! Presented in partnership... more
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Risk Management Workshops with UConn Extension

December 6, 2023 - January 23, 2024
Risk management is a critical aspect of managing a farm business. This winter, The Carrot Project is partnering with the University of Connecticut Extension and other Connecticut collaborators to bring... more
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Farmers Circle with The Southern New England Farmers of Color Collaborative

December 31, 2023 - November 28, 2024
Farmer Circles are peer learning communities for farmers interested in discussing a certain topic in an informal, supportive environment. Each circle meets for at least 12 hours over the course... more
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MDAR Growing Your Farm Business Planning Course

January 9, 2024 - March 5, 2024
Course Details: When: Tuesdays, January 9 – March 5, 2024, 6-8:30pm Where: MDAR office in West Springfield, or alternate western MA location dependent upon interest Registration: Applications are accepted on... more
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Financial Literacy 101

January 9, 2024 - February 20, 2024
Are you thinking of starting a small farm? Do you already run a farm and are hoping to expand? Invest in yourself and watch your returns grow through this 7-week... more
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Wholesale Readiness Program for Food Entrepreneurs

January 12, 2024 - May 17, 2024
Are you an early-stage, but established food entrepreneur selling a consumer packaged good or value-added product in the northeast? Are you primarily selling direct to consumer and ready to begin... more
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Get the Latest News From CISA

Valley Bounty: The Valley as the Veggie Bowl for the Commonwealth

November 11, 2023    Posted in: CISA News, CISA's Valley Bounty Column, Press Room
Farms within the three counties of the Connecticut River Valley feed our local community while supplying food to our Commonwealth and the New England region. With farmland concentrated on the ... more
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NEPM: Ahlbin's Homemade Fire Cider

☝🏼 Kara Peters, owner of Ahlbin’s Homemade Fire Cider, tells Phil, Monte, and Kaliis all about what this magical mixture is, and the delicious and healing ways you can use ... more
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Valley Bounty: Crooked Trail Farm

October 28, 2023    Posted in: CISA News, CISA's Valley Bounty Column, Press Room
Erica Goulding and Kelcie Hillard had a vision of sustainable farming rooted in humane practices for animal care. Together, the co-owners built Crooked Trail Farm approximately five years ago in ... more
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NEPM: Riverland Farm

 . Monte, Kaliis and Jacob visit Riverland Farm in Sunderland to talk with owner Emily Landeck about:  What it means to be a women-run farm.  SWEET POTATOES 🍠 You can ... more
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Valley Bounty: Runnymede Farm

October 21, 2023    Posted in: CISA News, CISA's Valley Bounty Column, Uncategorized One, Press Room
The Norris family has operated Runnymede Farm in Westhampton for 104 years, with now the fifth generation of family members becoming stewards of their land. Currently, Karl and Lisa Norris ... more
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NEPM: Mycoterra Farm

This week on the #localherospotlight: Kaliis, Monte, and Phil get a crash course in the wacky world of mushrooms from Julia Coffey, owner of Mycoterra Farm in South Deerfield. Mushrooms ... more
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NEPM: Smith College Dining

This week on the #localherospotlight: Kaliis, Monte, and Phil learn about the delicious world of food at Smith College from Andy Cox, Executive Director of Auxiliary Services, and German  Alvarado, ... more
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Valley Bounty: Rooted Flowers

Rooted Flowers: A Secret Garden Close to Home  Rooted Flowers in Agawam is a local flower farm fueled by a passion for harmony between nature, land, and family. Since 2019, ... more
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NEPM: Holyoke Farmers' Market and La Finca Arecibena Torres Family Farm

This week on the #localherospotlight, Holyoke Farmers’ Market market manager Alexis Diaz De Jesus as well as Benito and Damaris Torres of La Finca Arecibena at Torres Family Farm talk ... more
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NEPM: Austin Brothers Valley Farm

This week on the Fabulous 413… Mike and Kathy Austin dropped by the studio to tell Monte, Kaliis, and Phil what’s going on this fall at Austin Brothers Valley Farm ... more
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Featured Local Hero Profile

Be a Local Hero

Local Hero Profile: Bloom Woolen Yarns

October 18, 2023    Posted in: Specialty Producer Profiles, Local Hero Profiles
Local Hero Profile by Julia Mazzuchi, Local Hero Program Assistant  The buy local movement in the Valley not only encompasses... more
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