Northeast Network of Immigrant Farming Projects

Project Overview

Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2005: $80,904.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2008
Region: Northeast
State: Massachusetts
Project Leader:
Jennifer Hashley
Trustees of Tufts College / New Entry Sustainable Farming Project

Annual Reports


  • Agronomic: peanuts, potatoes, soybeans, sugarcane, sunflower
  • Fruits: berries (other), berries (strawberries)
  • Vegetables: sweet potatoes, beans, beets, broccoli, cabbages, carrots, cucurbits, eggplant, garlic, greens (leafy), onions, peas (culinary), peppers, sweet corn, tomatoes
  • Additional Plants: herbs, ornamentals
  • Animals: bees, poultry, goats, fish
  • Miscellaneous: mushrooms


  • Animal Production: housing, parasite control, animal protection and health, feed rations, free-range, herbal medicines, homeopathy, manure management, mineral supplements, grazing - multispecies, pasture fertility, pasture renovation, preventive practices, range improvement, grazing - rotational, vaccines, watering systems, winter forage
  • Crop Production: windbreaks
  • Education and Training: technical assistance, demonstration, extension, farmer to farmer, focus group, mentoring, networking, participatory research, workshop
  • Farm Business Management: new enterprise development, budgets/cost and returns, cooperatives, community-supported agriculture, marketing management, feasibility study, agricultural finance, market study, risk management, value added, whole farm planning
  • Natural Resources/Environment: biodiversity, hedges - grass, soil stabilization
  • Pest Management: biological control, botanical pesticides, chemical control, competition, cultural control, disease vectors, field monitoring/scouting, flame, integrated pest management, mulches - living, physical control, mulching - plastic, cultivation, prevention, row covers (for pests), sanitation, soil solarization, trap crops, traps, mulching - vegetative, weather monitoring, weed ecology
  • Production Systems: transitioning to organic, holistic management
  • Soil Management: composting, green manures, organic matter, soil analysis, soil quality/health
  • Sustainable Communities: new business opportunities, partnerships, public participation, urban agriculture, urban/rural integration, analysis of personal/family life, community services, employment opportunities, social capital, social networks, sustainability measures

    Proposal abstract:

    Immigrant farming projects assist aspiring immigrant farmers in five Northeast states to develop sustainable agricultural enterprises and emphasize training and technical assistance. These projects face several challenges in communicating with, and providing assistance to immigrant farmers. Barriers include farmers’ limited education and agricultural training, limited English language skills, low-literacy, limited acculturation, and broad cultural differences. The Northeast Network of Immigrant Farming Projects is a collaboration of 6 immigrant farming projects - staff, farmers and partners - that share resources, develop common strategies and organize joint trainings. To address the training barriers, 30-35 staff and partner representatives and 20 farmers will complete a 3-day low-literacy training (30 participants), a 2-day Exploring the Small Farm Dream Trainers course (12 participants), an 8-12 session NxLevel Training (10 participants), two 1-day cultural diversity and sensitivity trainings (40 participants including 20 farmers), and a 2-day Participatory Farmer Organizing and Community Development Trainers course (12 participants). As they complete the trainings, 20 staff and partners will collaborate to revise or develop new course materials and presentations for farmers that reflect what is learned to better address their farmers’ cultural, educational and literacy needs and capacities. Finally, 12 participants representing six immigrant farming projects will incorporate these materials into their own training and technical assistance reaching approximately 150 farmers during the project period. Materials and training experiences will be shared among the projects and posted on the website. This will result in improved training and technical assistance and more effective communications between providers and immigrant farmers, and among farmers from very diverse backgrounds.

    Performance targets from proposal:

    Of the 30 to 35 staff and partners of immigrant farming projects who receive training-of-trainers instruction and professional development in five areas, 20 will subsequently develop and share training curricula and materials for immigrant farmers, and 12 representing six projects will incorporate these into their education and training programs.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.