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 30 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?

Container Garden Design

March 6 - March 27
Acquire knowledge of the skills required for beautiful and successful container gardens with Jenna O’Brien, owner of Viridissima Horticulture and Design. Get to know the plants that thrive in containers... more
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Two-Part Grant Writing Workshop: How to read and interpret grant applications.

March 6 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Register here! Berkshire Grown will host a virtual two-part grant writing training, led by Kara Weinstein, for farmers and food producers looking to develop an understanding of how to read... more
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Legal Food Hub Webinar: Branding Best Practices

March 7 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Register here!  As a small business owner, you want to develop and protect your brand, but you don’t yet have the funds to file for trademark protection. Attorney Christina Licursi... more
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Lunch On Local

March 7 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Join us for this free event on Zoom or in the CISA conference room for a short, informal discussion about what’s happening in our local food system on March 7th... more
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MA Commercial Urban Farming Symposium

March 8
Join the Urban Farming Institute and Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources for the 8th annual MA Commercial Urban Farming Symposium. This all-day event promises to be a transformative experience for... more
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Hatfield 2040: The Future of Farming

March 9 @ 8:30 am - 12:30 pm
Over the past year, the Hatfield Comprehensive Planning Committee has solicited feedback from the farming community on the many challenges and opportunities in agriculture this decade and beyond.  This workshop... more
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Field Notes: Local Food and Farm Stories with CISA

March 10 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
CISA’s Field Notes is a live storytelling event celebrating the many ways local food and farming leave their mark on our lives and in our communities. This will be our... more
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2024 Peer Learning Circles for woman-identifying farmers

March 12 - March 28
You’re invited to participate in a unique, virtual collaborative learning environment for woman-identifying farmers to connect and share challenges and opportunities at this crucial stage in farm growth. These women-centered... more
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Explore Farming Workshop

March 12 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Register here! In this free workshop you will: Learn about New Entry Sustainable Farming Project's courses and services Identify resources you have and resources you'll need for your farm business... more
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UMass Produce Safety Alliance Grower Trainings

March 13 - March 15
Two dates and locations available - Milford When: Wednesday, March 13, 2024 - 8:30am to 5:00pm Where: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Boston - Milford, 11 Beaver St, Milford, MA, 01757 Registration: Greenfield When: Friday, March 15, 2024... more
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Finding Funding for Farm and Food Businesses / Hallar financiación para empresas agrícolas y alimentarias

March 13 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Wednesday, March 13th 5:30-7pm, online.  John Waite from the Franklin County Community Development Corporation will give us an overview of the funding landscape for farms and food businesses. We will... more
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Food Entrepreneurship Series

March 13 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
This course will guide aspiring food business owners through the details of business planning and launch, food permitting and licensing, branding and marketing, and legal topics specific to food businesses.... more
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Get the Latest News From CISA

Valley Bounty: CSAs are the Community Behind the Food

Though more weeks of winter lie ahead, National Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) week — Feb. 19-25 — marks the symbolic start of the CSA cycle, when member sign-ups start rolling ... more
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NEPM: North Hadley Sugar Shack

  Phil, Monte, and Kaliis get sweet details on the upcoming maple season from Joe Boisvert at North Hadley Sugar Shack. Hear how both their business and the process of ... more
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Valley Bounty: Love Leaf Farm

If there’s a lesson to be learned from Love Leaf Farm in South Hadley, it’s this: don’t judge a farm by its size. Or the size of their crops, for ... more
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Valley Bounty: O'Brien Farm

Published January 27, 2024 in the Daily Hampshire Gazette New horizons for a small dairy farm O’Brien Farm in Orange opt to strategize, not pasteurize “We do a little bit ... more
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NEPM: Go Fresh Mobile Market

_ Riley Gilroy and Monica Hernandez of Go Fresh Mobile Market give Phil, Monte, and Kaliis a look at how their program makes a real difference in the lives of ... more
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Valley Bounty: Lombrico Farms

“The best carrots you'll ever eat are picked in January or February,” says Erik Debbink, owner of Lombrico Farm in Whately. In the dead of winter, their sweetness shines through. ... more
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NEPM: Winter Moon Roots

Rosendo Santizo of Winter Moon Roots talks to Monte, Kaliis, and Jacob about his farm in Hadley, which is all about growing the sweetest root veggies around – and a ... more
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Valley Bounty: Mass Food Delivery

Mass Food Delivery was born in March of 2020 as farmers’ markets began closing in response to the pandemic. The concept of home delivery seemed the best option... “When everything shut down ... more
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NEPM: Walker Farm at Whortleberry Hill

This week on the Local Hero Spotlight, we’re joined by Joan Walker of Walker Farm at Whortleberry Hill in New Braintree, a nurse turned farmer and self proclaimed carnivore. Hear ... more
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Valley Bounty: Leverett Village Co-op

This year, the Leverett Village Co-op turns 50. Over half a century, it has grown beyond a grocery store to become a cultural institution and hidden gem on North Leverett ... 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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