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Grow Food Northampton has between .25-1.5 acres of farmland available for lease at our Community Farm. The previous leaseholder farmer has invested considerably in infrastructure and soil fertility, making this an especially valuable opportunity for someone interested in starting or nurturing a farm business in a supportive community with many elements already in place.

Grow Food Northampton (GFN) owns and stewards 121 acres of land in Florence, MA. It is home to multiple farms with leases of terms ranging from 1 to 99 years; a 320-plot community garden; food access and education programming; and a diverse ecosystem on the banks of the Mill River. We are seeking new farmers to join our community.

Acreage available: Flexible, between ¼ and 1.5 acres. The outgoing lessee has farmed mixed-vegetables using no-till practices on 0.75 acres for the past two seasons.

On-farm infrastructure provided: Frost-free water and 120v electricity. Metered water and electric usage will be paid by the lessee. In addition to water and electricity, the following resources are available for shared use with other
farmers on the GFN site, for a fee:
• Shared cooler space
• Shared space in a small barn
• Use of a 33 horse-power John Deere tractor with bucket and flail mower
• Use of BCS 853 walk-behind tractor with rear-tine tiller and power harrow attachment
• Composting outhouse (no fee)

The outgoing lessee is offering the following equipment for purchase:
• Various irrigation systems designed for small-scale cultivation
• 12’ x 40’ Hoop House
• 7’ x 10’ Shed
• Various other hand tools and supplies
Equipment purchase will be negotiated and made directly with the outgoing lessee. Please inquire about the full list of available items.

Lease fee: the maximum per-acre fee for the land lease is $400 per year. A sliding scale fee is offered to farmers who identify as Black, Indigenous or other person of color. Those belonging to other historically disadvantaged groups and/or with individual or structural obstacles in accessing affordable land for farming may be considered for the sliding scale on a case-by-case basis.

Stewardship Principles, Goals, and Requirements
GFN lessees are independent and autonomous, but we ask that they agree with and support GFN’s stewardship principles and goals, and adhere to all requirements.

Principles
Grow Food Northampton is committed to the protection and enhancement of the resources in our care,
the biodiversity of our natural and cultural systems, and the capacity of our organization to model and
promote climate resilient practices. We acknowledge, honor, and value the many layers of cultural,
ecological, and political past and present on this landscape.

Goals
In order to honor the above principles, our stewardship goals are to:
1. Conserve and protect water resources, and mitigate damage from flooding
2. Conserve and enhance soil health
3. Foster healthy and diverse plants and animals
4. Demonstrate and contribute to climate resilience
5. Protect and maintain the site’s natural and built features

Requirements and prohibitions
1. Farmers will be asked to create an annual management plan, either written or in conversation with our staff, that describes farming practices and how such practices address and advance the above goals.
2. The use of GMO seeds is prohibited. Any synthetic fertilizer, herbicide, or pesticide not on OMRI-approved lists is also prohibited.
3. Farmers must carry general liability insurance.

To apply:
Please write a description of the farm operation you propose for this leased land. If writing in English or using email is not your preferred way to communicate, please contact us to discuss other options.

Applications should include:
• the types of crops you will grow;
• the market or use that they will be grown for;
• the size lease you are interested in;
• your general farming approach and the farming practices you plan to use;
• your farming experience, and;
• if you are from a historically disadvantaged group and/or how you may have experienced individual or structural obstacles in accessing affordable land for farming.

Please submit applications via email by December 1st, 2021. You are welcome to visit and observe the land before you apply.

To submit an application or to ask a question, contact Michael Skillicorn at Grow Food Northampton: (413) 320-4799 ext. 109

About Littleton Community Farm  

Littleton Community Farm (LCF) is a 3-acre diversified vegetable farm in Littleton, M.A. whose mission is to reduce food insecurity in our area, provide farm-based education, and be a place for community connection. We aim to inspire through hands-on exposure to agriculture and growing for our entire community. The Farm offers a 75 household CSA and Pick Your Own Flowers operation.

Job Description

Littleton Community Farm is looking for an experienced and committed candidate to the fill the role of Farm Manager. Reporting to our Board of Directors, and overseen by the Executive Director this person will oversee and run all day-to-day farming, food donation, land stewardship, budgeting, and crew. These responsibilities also include interfacing with the community, partners and funders.

The ideal candidate will possess strong experience and knowledge of sustainable production, CSA management, experience managing and working with staff and volunteers, a strong work ethic, and an aptitude for building rapport with the wider community. The farm is moving to significantly increase production over the coming years to increase our donation amounts.  This will include moving towards season extension and construction of a new 30×70 high tunnel and caterpillar tunnels in 2022. Mitigating and adapting the farm to climate change is key to our future success.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Oversee and manage:
  2. Managing staff and volunteers, interfacing with the community, and reporting to the board.
  3. Maintain system of record keeping and management.
  4. Support LCF’s fundrasing goals through technical input in grant writing and meeting of donors on the farm in partnership with the Executive Director.

Required qualification and experiences:

  1. A minimum of 5 years of farm experience including 2 years of a farm assistant role and no-till experience.
  2. Excellent communication, collaboration and leadership skills, including a proven track record of managing personnel.
  3. Demonstrated recorded of high level of planning and organization.
  4. Ability to work well with a variety of customers and community members.
  5. Experience with operating, maintaining basic repairs machinery and power equipment.
  6. Knowledge of the principles of soil biology, no-till crop production, permaculture, food web, flowers, growing perennials, using cover crops, utilizing living mulches, composting, soil testing, and/or other ecological/organic growing methods.
  7. Building/construction experience.

Desired qualifications and experiences:

  1. A willingness and ability to work outdoors in all types of weather, under potentially strenuous conditions.
  2. A detail-oriented approach, with considerable attention to order, cleanliness, and an ongoing commitment to improving systems and practices.
  3. Email communication (timely and proper etiquette), knowledge of Box, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint a plus.
  4. A desire to produce food of the highest nutritional, culinary, and ecological quality, and to continue to learn and grow as a person and farmer. Continuous personal development is encouraged and supported at Littleton Community Farm.

OTHER REQUIREMENTS

  1. Ability to lift a minimum of 50 pounds.
  2. Cell phone and computer access
  3. Reliable transportation
  4. Satisfactory background (including criminal) and reference checks

TIME REQUIREMENTS

This is a full-time job. During the growing season, a typical workweek is approximately 50-60 hours/week; in the off-season, the typical work week is 25-30 hours/week. THESE ARE ESTIMATES. Evenings and weekends are required during the growing season and for special events.

SALARY AND BENEFITS

  1. This is a competitive salaried position that will based on the market and the applicant’s skills and experience.
  2. Mass Health Stipend.
  3. Two weeks paid vacation, paid holidays and 40 hours a year paid sick time.
  4. Access to organic produce and flowers grown on the farm.
  5. Personal and professional development opportunities in consultation with the Board of Directors, including opportunities to develop skills in non-profit management and farm-based education.

Interested candidates should email admin@littletoncommunityfarm.org a cover letter and resume. 

November 15th is the deadline to apply.

 

Daily Hampshire Gazette, September 23, 2021

By Jacob Nelson

FOR THE GAZETTE

Buying local is one way to “vote with your fork,” using consumer demand to help shape the economy. Individuals, families and businesses all have some power in this way, but some have more than others.

One family votes with a handful of forks — UMass Amherst Dining votes with 55,000. That’s how many meals they serve daily during peak season at four dining halls, 30 retail locations, and across their catering services and hotel. Over a year, UMass Dining spends $25-30 million to serve 6 million meals, and they’re doing a lot to invest that in local farms and businesses when sourcing the food they need.

In economic terms, UMass Amherst is what’s called an anchor institution — a large organization with a steady demand for goods and services that a community can rely on. Says Chris Howland, director of Procurement, Logistics and Special Projects at UMass Amherst Dining, “We’re here for the long term, with resources to invest in the Valley if there are products we can use.”

In speaking with Howland and UMass Amherst Dining’s director of sustainability, Kathy Wicks, it’s clear the university is aware of the buying power it wields and tries to wield it responsibly. Local sourcing of food is a cornerstone.

The school uses a tiered system for prioritizing what they buy, first looking for products from within Massachusetts, then expanding the search to New England and finally a 250-mile radius from campus. Currently, 8% of their purchasing is within Massachusetts and 20% is within New England — well above the average of 14.4% that Massachusetts colleges and universities spent on local purchasing, as recorded by Farm to Institution New England in 2017.

Beyond local, there are many other factors they consider, too.

“Just buying local is so yesterday,” Howland says. “We’re also beginning to track diversity, equity and inclusion as it relates to our purchasing.”

Wicks also mentions sustainability indicators, mostly relating to production standards such as “organic” or “humanely raised.”

“These are things we pay attention to,” Wicks says, “and we encourage our business partners to move towards regenerative practices if they can.” She lists CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture) and the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources as two entities she’s seen help farmers learn, fund and implement changes to meet some of these standards.

In many cases, local farms already have significant ability to provide what the university wants, and good communication and coordination are all that’s needed. As Wicks explains, “We meet with a number of our local partners in January when they’re developing their growing plans,” charting out what they can provide and when.

In other cases a bit more effort is required, but UMass Amherst Dining and local producers can work together to create the supply that’s needed. Here, the most powerful thing the university can do is make a promise.

For some, just the university’s commitment to purchase their products provides enough security to grow their business. “We’ve had a number of partners expand just based on the opportunity to be a vendor to UMass Amherst,” Wicks explains.

Howland also shares that the university has even written letters of support to help farms secure loans to scale up.

“When a bank sees they have a customer like UMass that isn’t going anywhere and can commit to that purchase, it really helps,” he says.

It’s worth noting that UMass Amherst Dining has the autonomy to set its own priorities in part because they run things in house, rather than contracting with an outside food service company such as Aramark, Sodexo or Bon Appetit, the biggest such providers for U.S. colleges and universities, according to Inside Higher Ed. “Smaller schools may not have the capacity to do this,” says Howland — even the other UMass campuses.

The biggest factor feeding UMass Amherst’s ability to buy more local food is its location, Howland says. “We’re blessed in this area. There’s challenges with sourcing local food in a city, but here in the Valley there’s such rich soil and so much food available.”

Howland lists seasonal produce among the easiest local food to procure and notes the strides they’ve made in sourcing local proteins as well, including dairy, meat, seafood, eggs and mushrooms. UMass Amherst Dining’s website includes a full list of over 100 local businesses and distributors they source from.

Balancing local supply and demand across the seasons remains one of their biggest challenges. “We do the bulk of our business during the academic year between September and May,” Howland says, but that’s at odds with the growing season for many crops.

“Making sure we coordinate our needs with the vendors’ supply is key,” he says, as is producers’ ability to store crops and deliver them regularly over the year.

Another challenge is their kitchens’ capacity to process incoming local food.

“The time it takes to prepare the amount of food we have to prepare … it’s a lot,” Wicks says. Whenever a local producer can peel, cut or otherwise process their product, it becomes a more desirable purchase for the university.

Of course, many foods are just hard to grow or find locally in the quantities UMass Amherst uses. Beans and grains are two such staples, though they are starting to make headway there, Wicks says, noting their relationship with Ground Up Grains, a local grain mill in Hadley.

How UMass Amherst brings local food into their kitchens is one part of this story. From there the school’s chefs transform those ingredients into meals, attempting to satisfy many different cultural and dietary preferences. This presents its own challenges and opportunities.

Perhaps the biggest opportunity is to engage eaters in the same kinds of discussions the institution is having about what responsible decision-making looks like concerning food. Eating local is one issue to consider, but Wicks mentions several others issues the university highlights in its educational programming, including climate impacts, health, waste and the cultural history of different cuisines.

“We really want to make the connection that there are people and systems behind where your food comes from,” she says, “and you can actively participate and shape that multiple times a day.”

Adds Howland, “We have a really big opportunity here to change people’s lives in a positive way. Not everyone at UMass has been exposed to the types of things we’re able to do, both culinary and how we source things. As people experience this, they become awakened to what food is able to do, and it’s pretty powerful.”

Jacob Nelson is communications coordinator for CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture) To learn more about which institutions in the Valley support the local food economy, visit buylocalfood.org/find-it-locally.

“Fear on the Farm”, the Monster Mash Scream Park at McCray’s Farm in South Hadley, “will scare the soy out of you” says farm owner Stephen McCray. Open Fri-Sun all October, 7pm ’til late. For tickets and more information, visit fearonthefarm.com.

The foundation of McCray’s Farm is their dairy. They’ve bottled and sold their own milk since 2013, and the quality is superb, due in part to a cooler and slower pasteurization process. Look for it at their stand and other local stores, listed here.

But as Stephen candidly shares, agritourism income is really what sustains them.

McCray’s is a great spot for local food and family activities, from PYO pumpkins to minigolf, hayrides, a petting zoo, and farm stand serving lunch and ice cream. Learn more here.

Currently searching to purchase farmland in the Pioneer Valley or surrounding area. Experienced farmer with strong pre-approval from local lender. Will consider land without a home as well. Please contact Erik Debbink at Debbinke@gmail.com or call (413) 588-1539

Melita Farms in Methuen, Massachusetts is Hiring a Farm Manager

ABOUT MELITA FARMS

Melita Farms operates under a 501c (3) non-profit working to address sources of food insecurity and to create opportunities for locally sourced food, jobs, and educational programs to support community needs. Melita Farms is a sustainable, urban farming and entrepreneurial start-up. We will be selling our produce in a market at our location, distribute food to local markets, donate food to area food banks, operate a community garden, host on-site events and functions throughout the year, among other initiatives to support our mission.

FARM MANAGER POSITION OVERVIEW

Melita Farms seeks an experienced Farm Manager in Methuen, MA who will report to our Executive Director. The Farm Manager will oversee and run our day-to-our day farming operation, which includes cultivation of up to ten acres of vegetables, berries, and cut-flowers. The farm is centerpiece of our non-profit community, which includes a market, community garden, Airbnb, educational programs, and events, so the farm needs to look well-tended at all times. There is an additional forty acres available for cultivation that we typically lease to a third-party.

The individual will have 2-3 years of farming experience and be capable of creating a crop plan, making purchases of seed and germinated plants, operating and maintaining farm equipment, leading a diverse team of part-time farming staff and volunteers, develop and implement irrigation systems, assist with the maintenance of our community garden, among other tasks. The candidate will possess a valid driver’s license, reliable transportation, a cell phone, the ability to lift a minimum of fifty pounds, and pass a satisfactory background check. The position will run from mid-February through mid-November.

COMPENSATION

Compensation for the position is $35,000. During the height of the growing season the work week will be longer and during the shoulder months the work week will be shorter. Vacation days and time off will be offered.

TO APPLY:

Please send a resume and cover letter to our Executive Director Octavien Spanner ospanner@outlook.com

Website: melitafarms.org

Published in the Daily Hampshire Gazette October 16, 2021

By JACOB NELSON

For the Gazette

Fletcher Farm, just off Rt. 10 in Southampton, is the kind of place many probably envision when they hear the phrase “family farm.” A small New England dairy and farm stand selling what’s seasonal and local, still operated by one family.

The farm is first and foremost a dairy, maintains patriarch Bob Fletcher, himself a third-generation dairy farmer. “I grew up on my family’s dairy farm out near Boston,” Fletcher says. “When my dad’s operation got squeezed out by development, I decided to come out here.”

Fletcher purchased a tract of farmland preserved under the state’s Agricultural Preservation Restriction program (APR) in 1987, which became Fletcher Farm. “We own 110 acres, and we’re renting another 150,” he shares.

In the beginning, most of the work fell to Fletcher and his wife Cheryl, who raised three kids on the farm. Now two of those grown children have returned to farm full time after earning college degrees in Dairy Management, and the third pitches in during the busy season.

“It’s definitely gotten easier since my son Matthew and daughter Nicole jumped into the business,” says Fletcher. “Matthew handles most of growing crops for the stand and the hay and corn silage we feed the cows.” Nicole, meanwhile “always has her eyes on the herd,” and does the most to care for the cows.

Meanwhile, Fletcher’s son in-law George has taken over managing the farm stand alongside Cheryl, who maintains an off-farm job. Other relatives pitch in when needed —Chery’s sister and her husband even relocated to Southampton this fall to help at the stand while still working fulltime remotely.

As a diversified dairy, the farm’s cows generate their core income, says Fletcher. Meanwhile, “the farm stand allows us to take some of the (financial) pressure off the dairy, so it doesn’t have to carry the full weight.”

Out of 170 cows, about half are milked at any one time. The rest are calves or unbred heifers waiting their turn. The herd was all Holsteins at first, but now contains a mix of one third Jerseys.

Fletcher Farm’s milk is sold to the Agri-Mark dairy cooperative, which buys, bottles, and processes milk from hundreds of regional dairy farms. Once it enters this regional processing system, any one farm’s milk isn’t entirely traceable, but Fletcher guesses a good portion of theirs becomes butter, skim milk, or cream at the co-op’s West Springfield processing plant.

Meanwhile, some may be sent to Vermont to become Cabot cheese (Cabot is one of Agri-Mark’s brands), which Fletcher Farm also carries at their stand.

Farm stand opens

The farm’s newly constructed farm stand, now with more space, better utilities, and much more outdoor seating, opened new possibilities. “It’s helped us open up the farm to the public and make it a destination, particularly in the fall,” says Fletcher.

Year round they sell local items they grow themselves, and those of other local farms. Fletcher, again betraying his affinity for dairy, highlights the milk they offer from Mapleline Farm in Hadley, and goat cheeses from Thomas Farm and Dairy in Sunderland.

Spring brings flowers to the stand. Summer means fresh produce, often grown on-site. This time of year, “we’ve got cornstalks, straw bales, and heirloom pumpkins,” Fletcher says, all grown by them, and mums grown by others locally.

“We finish up the year selling Christmas trees from Cranston’s Tree Farm in Ashfield,” he continues. That’s been a tradition for nearly 30 years.

Group visits

Another tradition at Fletcher Farm is inviting groups of young students from around the Valley to the farm for a day of fall fun. “This started when my daughter Nicole was in kindergarten,” Fletcher recalls. They invited her class to see the animals and pick a pumpkin. Nowadays, hayrides are also a staple of these visits.

Last year group visits were canceled, but the Fletchers kept the tradition alive, delivering pumpkins to many local schools. This year visits are limited, but for those that can’t come, pumpkin delivery is still an option.

Fletcher is reflective about the farm’s place in the lives of local families. “It’s special that we’ve seen these kids grow up, go to high school, go away to college, come back, get married and have kids of their own now coming to the farm,” he says.

“We have people all the time walk into the farm stand, look at Cheryl and I and say, ‘I remember coming here when I was in kindergarten,” he continues. “It makes you realize we’ve really been doing this for a long time. It’s pretty cool.”

The Fletchers open the farm’s door to more than just kids though. People of all ages are invited to see the animals and inner workings of the farm on certain weekends throughout the year.

“We like people coming to the farm,” says Fletcher, noting their desire to help fill the gaps in society’s understanding of agriculture. “We like showing people how we’re treating the animals, talking about why, and bringing awareness to where food comes from. It’s good for everybody.”

Usually, these open farm days coincide with other events at the farm stand, like a local food or ice cream truck visiting. Explains Fletcher, “with the new construction there’s more picnic tables and space for people to hang out, have lunch, and take in the farm for the afternoon.” Those interested can check the farm’s Facebook page for announcements of future events.

“Family farm” is now a widely-used buzzword, but for many local farms in the Valley the image it evokes of a hardworking family selling right to their neighbors is still close to reality. For Fletcher Farm and others like them, it’s the community’s support for this model that keeps them running.

Jacob Nelson is Communications Coordinator for CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture). To find local food and learn more about farms in your neighborhood, visit buylocalfood.org/find-it-locally.

Sixteen Acres Garden Center in Springfield, a local business touched by COVID loss, helps others find hope by nurturing green thumbs.

Hear more about what to plant in the fall (and their fall perennial sale), their greenhouse open year round (visit to stave of winter bone chills) and why they buy local.

Job Opening:  Program Manager

Status: 40 hours a week (full-time)

Time Frame: Review begins November 1, 2021, position open until filled

Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) is a nonprofit that strengthens farms and engages the community to build the local food economy. We run the Be a Local Hero, Buy Locally Grown® marketing campaign, educate the public about buying local, offer technical assistance trainings and workshops for farmers, and support programs to increase access to local food in our region.

Our team has a range of skills and life experiences and is a mix of trainers, former farmers, communicators, and administrators. We work to build a diverse and resilient food economy with viable farms, fair and just working conditions, strong environmental stewardship, and accessible and available local food in all our communities. We are committed to understanding the history and current impacts of racism in the food system and actively work towards equity. We are committed to recruiting and retaining creative, ethical, smart, and innovative people.

POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Program Manager manages the Local Hero membership program and co-leads CISA’s farm and business support efforts in partnership with a strong team. This includes coordinating the activities for our technical assistance programs for farms, farmers’ markets, and local food businesses; collaborating with the management team and farm business support team to set strategic goals for our technical assistance and Local Hero programs; and supporting development of new programmatic strategies, areas, and activities. The Program Manager will also provide research, planning and technical assistance support for specific initiatives across the organization, and support grant writing and grant management.

Our ideal candidate enjoys providing leadership support to a dynamic team; networking farms and businesses to further their success; and aligning capacity to needs in support of CISA’s mission. The candidate is a capable project manager and can juggle and prioritize multiple projects and think strategically.

GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES

Other Duties

Perform other related duties as assigned by the Program Director.

REPORTING and SUPERVISION

This position reports to the Program Director and provides direct supervision to Program Coordinators and the Program Associate.

QUALIFICATIONS

Strong candidates for this job have team-building and networking or customer service experience, strong communication skills, the ability to manage multiple deadlines and tasks, and an interest in evaluation as tool for improvement. Specifically, we are looking for the following qualifications:

 PREFERENCES

It’s a plus if you are comfortable with relational databases and grant writing. It’s also a plus if you speak Spanish or have other skills or experience that can help further CISA’s mission to more equitably serve those working in agriculture and local food businesses. You don’t have to already be tapped into how amazing local agriculture is but if you are, that’s great!

HOURS AND COMPENSATION
Salary is $57,500- 64,000, depending on experience. This is a full-time, exempt position. Health care, vision, dental, long-term disability, 401K matching, sick time, 10 paid holidays, 4 personal days, and 15 vacation days in the first year are offered. Access to a car and some weekend and evening availability are required.

CISA is currently operating with a hybrid office model with at least two days a week in the office and up to three days from home. We allow staff flexibility in their regular schedules and understand that flexibility can support a healthy work-life balance. Occasional travel within CISA’s service area (Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin counties, MA) for communications outreach and events will be required.

Writing samples and references may be requested.

CISA is an equal opportunity employer. Equal employment opportunity is a sound and just concept to which CISA is firmly bound. CISA will not engage in discrimination against, or harassment of any person employed or seeking employment with CISA on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, status as a protected veteran, or other characteristics protected by law. We are committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive environment.

Please complete applicant questions and attach your resume via our online application form. Questions can be directed to Jennifer Williams. Cover letters are not required and will not be reviewed.

Job Opening:  Communications Coordinator

Status:  40 hours a week (full-time)

Time Frame:  Review begins November 1, 2021, position open until filled

Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) is a nonprofit that strengthens farms and engages the community to build the local food economy. We run the Be a Local Hero, Buy Locally Grown® marketing campaign, educate the public about buying local, offer technical assistance trainings and workshops for farmers, and support programs to increase access to local food in our region.

Our team has a range of skills and life experiences and is a mix of trainers, former farmers, communicators, and administrators. We work to build a diverse and resilient food economy with viable farms, fair and just working conditions, strong environmental stewardship, and accessible and available local food in all our communities. We are committed to understanding the history and current impacts of racism in the food system and actively work towards equity. We are committed to recruiting and retaining creative, ethical, smart, and innovative people.

POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Communications Coordinator implements communications that support the mission of the organization. This includes: CISA’s online presence (website and social media); writing and creative development; creation and management of community events; and maintaining communications systems. The Communications Coordinator manages the day-to-day activities for this work and collaborates with the communications team to set strategic goals and develop new strategies and activities.

Our ideal candidate enjoys communicating effectively to different audiences and loves organizing and running events. You can connect ideas and individual stories to our mission and are inspired to share people’s stories through a variety of platforms. You are detail oriented and can see the big picture. You are a capable project coordinator and are tenacious when working towards a goal.

GENERAL RESPONSIBILITIES

1) Implement CISA’s communications initiatives:

2) Plan and execute community focused events connecting people to local food and farms. Including event support in implementing Field Notes, CISA’s premiere communications and public storytelling event.

3) Bring creative and strategic thinking about communications to further CISA’s mission.

4) Represent CISA at public presentations and other venues as needed.

 Other Duties

Perform other related duties as assigned by the Communications Manager.

REPORTING and SUPERVISION

This position reports to the Communications Manager. May include opportunities to supervise interns.

QUALIFICATIONS

You know how to tell a story through social media and capture people’s attention, and you enjoy getting people together to learn something new or have an experience that is meaningful. Ideally you will have had two or more years experience in communications and/or event management. You can hold details and prefer to be supported by your team rather than task managed. You are deadline focused and not intimidated by having a number of projects going at once. You like to evaluate the effectiveness of communications strategies, viewing it as an opportunity to learn and improve. And, you graduated from a four-year degree program or have equivalent life and work experience.

 PREFERENCES

It’s a plus if you have some graphic design experience and/or comfort with relational databases. It’s also a plus if you have skills or experience that can help further CISA’s mission to more equitably serve those working in agriculture and local food businesses. You don’t have to already be tapped into how amazing local agriculture is but if you are, that’s great!

Hours and compensation: $21-$24/hour, depending on experience. This is a full-time, non-exempt position. Health care, vision, dental, long-term disability, 401K matching, sick time, 10 paid holidays, 4 personal days, and 15 vacation days in the first year are offered. Access to a car and some weekend and evening availability are required.

CISA is currently operating with a hybrid office model with at least two days a week in the office and up to three days from home. We allow staff flexibility in their regular schedules and understand that flexibility can support a healthy work-life balance. Occasional travel within CISA’s service area (Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin counties, MA) for communications outreach and events will be required.

Writing samples and references may be requested.

CISA is an equal opportunity employer. Equal employment opportunity is a sound and just concept to which CISA is firmly bound. CISA will not engage in discrimination against, or harassment of any person employed or seeking employment with CISA on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, status as a protected veteran, or other characteristics protected by law. We are committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive environment.

Please complete applicant questions and attach your resume via our online application form.

Questions can be directed to Jennifer Williams. Cover letters are not required and will not be reviewed.

Beautiful 63-acre orchard, berry, and vegetable farm for sale in Amherst, MA.

Land under APR. Property includes farmhouse, barn, three high tunnels, on-site farm stand. 

Price: $1.3 M.

Pictures and video available here: https://tour.aspectsix.com/416-bay-rd

Listing details here: www.sallywillsell.com

Contact realtor: Sally Malsch, Five College Realty, Sally@SallyMalsch.com

Naomi Clark, the lone sister at Clark Brothers Orchards in Ashfield, joins Phil and Monte to chat about the family business — growing apples on Apple Valley Rd. – how apt – since 1886.

The best varieties? Naomi says early in the season “you can’t beat a Macoun, and we grow a great Macoun.” Coming up in late October, the cream of the crop is the Evercrisp “a cross between a Fuji and a Honey Crisp.”

Everything Clark Brothers grows is Eco Apple certified, a distinction earned through low-spray integrated pest management (IPM), promoting beneficial insects, and other ecologically-aware growing practices.

All Eco Apples at Big Y are supplied by Clark Brothers, and many at regional Whole Foods.

They also sell from their own farm stand at 580 Apple Valley Rd. in Ashfield! Every day but Saturdays

Photo by Kyle Johnson and Chris Duggan