We're celebrating 25 years! Read more about shifts in local agriculture over that time, and about the impact of 25 years of CISA's work as we look ahead to new challenges, new partnerships, and new possibilities.

Winter Fare comes to the winter farmers' markets! 
Mark these special days at upcoming farmers' markets on your calendar and join us for cooking demos, workshops, activities for kids, music, and fun! And don't forget, the markets run all winter, and you can earn SNAP/HIP at all of them.  

Amherst Winter Farmers' Market
Winter Fare at the Amherst Winter Farmers' Market
Saturday, February 10, 10am-2pm
Hampshire Mall, Hadley

Winter Fare at City Soul Farmers' Market
Saturday, March 10, 11am-2pm
Mason Square Library, Springfield 
Action Alert: HIP urgently needs funding 

The Healthy Incentives Program (HIP), launched in April 2017, has exceeded expectations, providing $3.3 million in fresh, healthy, local food to SNAP recipients and increasing sales for participating farmers. In response to that success and the obvious need it demonstrates, it is critical that the state invest money in the program to ensure it can continue providing the incentives. The Massachusetts Food System Collaborative, CISA, and a number of other partner organizations are urging the Massachusetts House Committee on Ways and Means to include $6.2 million in their Fiscal Year 2019 budget proposal for HIP.

Call your legislators to voice your support for this vital program today!
Local Hero Profile: Cream of the Crop Farm

Cream of the Crop Farm 
photo by Leslie Lynn Lucio
For Reuben Leinbach, Creamery Manager of Cream of the Crop Farm in Russell, making cheese, butter, and drinkable yogurt with the milk from the farm's herd of Jersey cows is more than just a day job. "Knowing that you're providing good food for people," he says, "that's very rewarding." 

Read the full profile here -- plus a bonus audio interview!
Local Hero enrollment is open through March 1

Many Hands Farm Corps, Amherst
Farmers, restaurateurs, retailers, specialty producers, dining service and garden center reps: sign up now to reap the benefits of membership in CISA's Local Hero campaign!

Full details and online enrollment.

Nominate your local hero 
Appalachian Naturals, 2015 Awardees
Do you know someone doing great work for local food and farms? We want to give them an award! Since 2003, CISA has recognized farmers, institutions, businesses, and everyday community members whose work helps sustain local agriculture. Awardees will be honored at CISA's annual meeting in 2018. Nominations are due February 16th. 

Find criteria and nomination form here.

A Gathering for the Next Generation of Farmers

Wednesday, March 7, 6pm
Greenfield Farmers Cooperative Exchange

Farmers who are carrying on family businesses, come talk with with your peers and collaborate on current needs, future goals, and actions to support the continuation of your family farm legacies. This event is intended to form a network of support and resources among those who may be returning to their own family farm, taking on leadership roles at their family farm, or stepping out on their own. Young and beginning operators and managers are encouraged to attend!

The lead organizer of this event is Tessa White-Diemand of Diemand Farm, with support from CISA and the Greenfield Farmers Cooperative Exchange.

For more information and to RSVP, please contact Jeff Budine at Greenfield Farmers Cooperative Exchange via email or at 413-773-9639. 

Book Review: No Table Too Small

Every now and then, a CISA staff member shares some thoughts on something they've been reading. Laura Titzer's new book, No Table Too Small: Engaging in the Art and Attitude of Social Change, is a how-to manual for activists and advocates looking to work with all stakeholders, especially those who are usually left out of the conversation, to change the food system.

Read more about it!
Quick Links

Check out our press page for news stories about local farms and local agriculture, along with our weekly interview series on WRSI, monthly column in the Daily Hampshire Gazette, and more!
Go to press page

Farm tours, film screenings, workshops, special local meals -- there's always something happening in the Valley!
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Job opportunities, land, equipment.
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