2016 - 2019 USDA Beginning Farmer Rancher Grant
This grant provides resources for the Organic Farm School, Northwest Ag Business Center, Whidbey Island Conservation District, San Juan County WSU Extension, and San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild to increase training, technical assistance, mentoring and land access for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers (BFRs) on the islands of Whidbey, San Juan, Orcas and Lopez.
Organic Farm School - funds provide a second instructor and expanded opportunities for students to learn and practice livestock management, tractor maintenance and repair, and more intensive marketing and financial management skills.
Northwest Ag Business Center - funds provide one-on-one business development assistance to at least 40 BFRs. NABC will provide in-depth technical assistance in developing a feasibility study and business plan, including sourcing capital, to 6 of these 40 and assistance in value-added product development to 2 of these.
Whidbey Island Conservation District and San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild - through this project, BFRs will be linked to farmland identified as available and suitable. Impetus for this objective comes directly from numerous BFRs, conservation organizations, agricultural strategic action plans, and landowners and is supported by a public desire to maintain the agricultural character and productivity of the islands. This project seeks to link 15 BFRs to farmland. The developed strategies could be used in any rural area with underutilized farmland.
San Juan County WSU Extension - funds will allow for the planning and implementation of six workshops annually, with each workshop repeated twice and distributed among the four islands of Whidbey, San Juan, Orcas, and Lopez. Workshops will cover crop production, livestock and poultry production, food safety, marketing, business planning and financial management.
WSU Extension will also develop an on-farm mentoring program to provide one-on-one consulting to six beginning BFR operations by a team of experienced local farmers.
2012 - 2015 WSDA Specialty Crop Block Grant
Seed Development and Production - provided equipment and educational outreach to the OFS, students, and regional farmers to strengthen seed development and production efforts throughout the Puget Sound region
2011 and 2012 - Sustainable Path Foundation
Provided funds for seed equipment not covered by the WSDA grant