Forgotten Farms: join us for a film screening on November 15th!

We're thrilled to be partnering with Amherst Cinema for a special film screening and panel discussion! Join us on November 15th for Forgotten Farms, a documentary film that tells the story of our region's dairy farmers, made by Berkshire County filmmakers Sarah Gardner and Dave Simonds.

Fewer than 150 dairy farms remain in Massachusetts. Most of those farms sell their milk wholesale, and because of the unique nature of the dairy industry, their milk is processed, sold, and consumed regionally -- in fact, 20% of the milk consumed in the state is from those Massachusetts dairy farmers. Despite making up only 3% of the farms in the Pioneer Valley, dairy farms steward 18% of the agricultural land and account for 14% of the agricultural economic activity.

But aside from the few (and wonderful!) farms that are processing their own milk or making their own cheese, how much do you know about this small, but vital, group of farms? Probably not too much, because dairy farms haven't been as visible in the local food work as other types of farms. So come learn about them, hear their stories, and ask questions of the filmmakers and farmer panelists who will be joining us! You can learn more about the film here and buy tickets now here.
CISA's Emergency Farm Fund now open for drought losses
CISA's Emergency Farm Fund, first established in response to Hurricane Irene, is now open for farms in Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire counties who have suffered crop losses due to this summer's sustained drought. Applications for zero-interest loans of $5,000-10,000 will be considered on a rolling basis until the October 21st deadline. Details and an online application form are available here.

Runners, join us for the Clarkdale Cider Run in November
Come celebrate the fall, drink some freshly pressed sweet cider, and support CISA at the 2nd Annual Clarkdale Cider Run on Sunday, November 13th at Clarkdale Fruit Farms in Deerfield. All proceeds will go to CISA, and registration is open now! Sign up and find details here.

Thanks for a wonderful
Taste the View!

Thanks to everyone who came out to eat, bid, and be merry at this year's Taste the View on September 23rd! And special thanks to all of our sponsors, everyone who donated something amazing to our auction, Smith College Dining Services for catering so deliciously, and Quonquont Farm for hosting. 
Believe it or not, it's time to reserve your local Thanksgiving turkey! We've got a list of farms and retailers offering locally raised birds here.

CSA farms are offering their fall and winter farm shares now, and it's not too early to sign up for next summer! Details about all types of CSA farms can be found here.

Many farmers' markets are still going strong through the end of this month and beyond into the winter. You can find end dates and more details about them all here, and don't forget that at participating markets, SNAP/Food Stamp dollars are doubled up to $10! Find a list of participating markets and details about SNAP & Save here.

If you're looking for cooking inspiration, check out our Valley Bounty column, which runs weekly in the Daily Hampshire Gazette. We recently featured pears, quinces, and eggplant.
Adams Farm Slaughterhouse recalls beef, veal, and bison products 
Adams Farm issued a voluntary recall on September 24th of selected lots of beef, veal, and bison that were slaughtered or processed between July 15th and September 22nd due to possible contamination with E. coli O157:H7. The lot numbers subject to the recall are listed in this USDA press release. Since Adams Farm is the closest slaughterhouse for Pioneer Valley farms, this recall impacts many farms in our region, and is particularly challenging following the summer's drought. CISA staff have been working to help affected businesses navigate this recall through communication with many local farms, Adams Slaughterhouse, USDA personnel, and others. If you have already consumed recalled meat and have not become sick, you are unlikely to fall ill, in part because E. coli is destroyed by proper cooking. If you have recalled meat, it can be returned it to the place of purchase.
Ballot Question #3
We've been following the debate around Ballot Question #3 with great interest. The proposed change to the rules around animal confinement would impact the practices and livelihood of one farm family in the state, and it would prohibit the sale of eggs and meat from animals that have been confined. Our work at CISA includes advocating for farmers, pushing for positive change in our local food system, and working to help people find, and afford, the type of food they want to buy. This is an issue that affects different members of our constituencies in widely varying ways, and advocates on both sides have made reasoned, and reasonable, arguments. We encourage you to learn more about it, and here are some resources to get you started: WBUR's useful primer, which includes animal rights perspectives and arguments from those concerned about increasing the cost of food, is here, and The Recorder's most recent article, which features Diemand Farm, is here.
Visit our press room for recent news stories, including a great profile of ServiceNet's Prospect Meadow Farm in Hatfield, coverage of CISA's Emergency Farm Fund being opened to help cover drought losses, and a look at the role college farms play in the local food movement.

You can also listen to our weekly radio interview series on WRSI with Local Hero businesses. Featured this month: Andy Cox of Smith College Dining Services, Kyle Kielbasa of Kielbasa Orchards in Hadley, Rick Intres of Bear Meadow Farm in Ashfield, Robert Vollinger of Vollinger Farm in Florence, and Rachel Scherer of the Little White Goat Dairy in Orange.

Local Hero Profile: Bashista Orchards 
"Every apple has a season," says Tom Bashista of Bashista Orchards and Cider Mill in Southampton. As a fourth generation orchardist farming 90 acres of land his family has owned for nearly a hundred years, Tom is certainly an expert in all things apple. Read the full profile here.
CISA's events page is constantly updated with farm tours, field days, festivals, and more! Here are a few upcoming highlights:

Just Roots Community Potluck
Saturday, October 15, 11am-5pm, Greenfield Community Farm
Come on out to the farm for a harvest celebration featuring workshops, an art activity, a farm project for those feeling the desire to put their hands to use, and, most importantly, a collaborative potluck feast. Find details here.

Slow Money Pioneer Valley Entrepreneur Showcase
Thursday, October 20, 5pm, Smith College Conference Center
Slow Money Pioneer Valley organizes an Entrepreneur Showcase each year to bring investors together with farm and food businesses interested in their support. Find details about the entrepreneurs who will be presenting, along with free registration, here.
Food Day
Monday, October 24, Various Locations
Food Day is a nationwide grassroots campaign to support and celebrate healthy, affordable, and sustainably produced food. For information about Food Day events in our area, or if you're interested in hosting one, visit the Food Day website.

Do you value the news you get from CISA? Join 1,100 others in supporting CISA's work. We've been strengthening farms and engaging the community to build the local food economy since 1993!


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