NOFA-NY Organic Farming and Gardening Conference

NOFA-NY Organic Farming & Gardening Conference

Healthy People, Healthy Planet” Inspires 36th Annual NOFA-NY Organic Farming and Gardening Conference 2018

Registration is open for January statewide conference, bringing experts & attendees together to gain practical knowledge

The intersection of health and agriculture is the focus of the upcoming Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York’s (NOFA-NY) Winter Conference, January 19-21, 2018 at the Saratoga Springs Hilton & City Center. NOFA-NY Executive Director Andrianna Natsoulas is thrilled about this year’s theme, Healthy People, Healthy Planet, noting that it “celebrates the production of nutritious food in an organic system that both maintains and encourages the well-being of the earth and all inhabitants.”

Through its 12 themed tracks featuring more than 80 workshops and presenters, the NOFA-NY Organic Farming and Gardening Conference attendees have the opportunity to recharge and re-invigorate before the next growing season. The conference is widely-known for networking, mentoring, and learning from wide-ranging experts in workshop tracks including: 

  • Permaculture, gardening, and homesteading

  • Value-added product 

  • Marketing

  • Youth 

  • Health

  • Policy

  • Business

  • Fruit

  • Vegetables

  • Grain and Field Crops

  • Specialty Crops

  • Livestock

Complementing the conference theme will be Keynote Speakers, David R. Montgomery and Anne Biklé who will address their experiences working in the fields of geology and biology. The duo will also discuss their book, The Hidden Half of Nature, which reveals why good health—for people and for plants—depends on microbiomes. 

Special pre-conference and pre-registered events also will be available as follows: On Thursday, January 18, a full-day event, “Growing, Washing & Packing High Tunnel Winter Greens” will begin at the conference and then move to Pleasant Valley Farm in Argyle, NY for the remainder of the day. On Saturday, January 20 the half-day intensive “Bread Alone” provides a unique opportunity to work bread with a master. And on Saturday afternoon, participants will learn about the history and culture of preserved products and contemporary producers, while enjoying a meat, cheese and beer pairing in “American Charcuterie & Artisan Cheese: On the World’s Stage.” Anyone interested should register at

The Winter Conference celebrates NOFA-NY’s Farmers of the Year who will be speaking on Friday, January 19 at 5 pm. This year’s recognition goes to Jody Bolluyt and Jean-Paul Courtens, co-owners of Roxbury Farm, a 425-acre organic/biodynamic farm in Kinderhook, NY. It is one of the largest community supported agriculture (CSA) programs in the region, serving over 1,000 members. The farm is known for its innovative practices in production systems and soil health as well as its pioneering efforts in the CSA movement, farmer training, long term land tenure model, and vegetable production systems. Jean-Paul also has spent the past three years developing a professional farmer training program at the Hudson Valley Farm Hub and helped transition their 1200-acre conventional sweet corn farm to organic and ecological practices. 

The addition to numerous trade show vendors, a first ever one-day Wellness Fair will offer health screenings, massages, acupuncture, reiki and more for participants and presenters. Speakers will provide information on living a healthy life in a sustainable style. Every evening brings a different entertainment opportunity, whether it be book signings, the Russet Trio, contra dancing with Fern Bradley, DJ Lloyd Church, or film screenings of Kombit: The CooperativeSEED: The Untold StoryUnder Contract: Farmers and the Fine Print; and Our Farms, Our Stories. 

In recognition of the many young farmers with families, a Children’s Conference accomodates children ages 6-12. Highlights include drumming, Latin dancing, making music, songwriting, planting and compost-making skills, and creating group and individual art. 

Full conference fees for the NOFA-NY Organic Farming and Gardening Conference are $265.50 for NOFA-NY members, and $295.00 for adult non-members. Daily fees also are available. To register and for the NOFA-NY Organic Farming and Gardening Conference or to get complete information, visit, call (585) 271-1979, or email Registration fees include breakfast and lunch for any registered day, plus workshops, the trade show, keynote addresses, meetings and all other activities. Dinner tickets, lodging and transportation are not included. Pre-registration closes January 12, 2018To receive a $10 discount, register by December 15, 2017.  A 20% registration discount for groups of three or more students is available by contacting Catherine Gagne at (585) 271-1979, ext. 512

NOFA-NY thanks Conference Patron Sponsor Hudson Valley Farm Hub, with additional program support by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA Risk Management Agency, and the NY Farm Viability Institute.

Learn more about organic farming practices through our Production Resources page

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