- Fruits: melons
- Vegetables: artichokes, asparagus, beans, beets, broccoli, cabbages, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucurbits, eggplant, greens (leafy), leeks, lentils, onions, parsnips, peas (culinary), peppers, radishes (culinary), rutabagas, sweet corn, tomatoes, brussel sprouts
- Animals: poultry
- Animal Production: grazing management, pasture fertility, pasture renovation, grazing - rotational
- Education and Training: general education and training
- Soil Management: soil microbiology, soil chemistry, organic matter, soil physics, soil quality/health
Four topics for education of small and beginning farmers were identified through farmer surveys and interactions with the Sustainable Farming Association of Minnesota (SFA). The four topic areas were Small Flock Poultry Management, Soils, Pasture Management, and Vegetable Production. A curriculum was developed in each of these areas in cooperation between Extension Educators and farmers from SFA. These curricula focus on the basics to assist farmers in getting started and understanding the topic to make better decision for managing their operations. Each curriculum was developed by a team of educators and farmers to try to assure that the content is relevant to the needs of farmers in Minnesota. Training of Extension and other educators will take place over the next year as staff turnover impacted the process of writing these curricula. All of the curricula will be available on the University of Minnesota Extension Small Farms Site http://www.extension.umn.edu/food/small-farms/.
The main objective was to develop curricula in each of the four topic areas. We used teams of educators and farmers that would develop the curricula and provide training on the curricula for other educators. This was done to insure the information was relevant to farmers and addressed the needs of farmers. A second objective was to strengthen the relationship of local educators and SFA. The third objective was to train educators across the state in these curricula.