Events & Professional Development Opportunities 2018-11-06T16:56:22+00:00

Upcoming Events

Grower-Buyer Meet-up at the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association’s Sustainable Agriculture Conference

November 9, 2018 | 5:15 pm – 6:45 pm | Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center, 4700 Emperor Boulevard, Durham, NC

NC Growing Together and the NC 10% Campaign are teaming up with the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association for an opportunity to connect growers with buyers who are interested in sourcing local foods on Friday, November 9, 2018 from 5:15 – 6:45 pm in conjunction with the 2018 Sustainable Agriculture Conference.

The facilitated speed-meeting format will ensure instant connections! We are seeking a good mix of producer types, including meat, dairy, value-added, and vegetable and fruit producers (both GAP certified and non-GAP certified).

Conference attendance is not required, but you must complete a short informational survey to attend. We are welcoming folks on a first-come, first-confirmed basis, so please register through the survey soon.

For more information please visit the CFSA website:

Food and Farm Business Development Webinar Series

Growing Profitable Niche Meat Production:  Providing Targeted Support and Creative Land Lease Opportunities

November 28, 2018 | 12 – 1 pm | Virtual (Webinar)

Speaker: Lee Menius | Technical Project Coordinator, NC Choices


Niche meat production is becoming an increasingly popular way for farmers to diversify and add value to their operations.  Lee Menius, NC Choices Program Coordinator will discuss the growing opportunities for farms to enter the niche meat business and share resources that are available to help make for successful business planning.  Lee will also discuss a project underway to help beginning farmers access land and develop long-term leases via solar, silvopasture, and land conservancy land partnerships.

About the speaker: Lee has spent over 20 years raising pastured pork for direct market sale and wholesale.  He has also worn the small business and meat processor hat, designing a state-inspected processing facility.  Lee has a degree in Animal Science from NC State University.

Missed a webinar?  Don’t worry!  View all the recorded NCGT Food and Farm Business Development Webinars on our YouTube channel.

The N.E.W. Business of Agriculture: Regional Opportunities for Growth in Nash, Edgecombe & Wilson Counties

Hosted by the Small Business Centers of Wilson, Nash and Edgecombe Counties
Where: Wilson Community College, Wilson, NC
When: November 30, 8:30 am – 3:15 pm
Lunch included.  Registration required at join us if you are a: Farmer, Agripreneur, Value Added Producer, Person Interested in Small Plot Niche Crops, New Farmer or Veteran Considering Farm Ownership, Farmer’s Market Vendor Seeking Growth, Organic Grower or Seller, or Person Exploring an Ag Related Business.This full-day event consists of a morning keynote address from Debbie Hamrick from NC Farm Bureau, three breakout sessions with options for small, mid and large-scale farmers and food business owners, a locally sourced lunch with a panel discussion, and resource tables for attendees.

The Business of Agriculture Series

Presented by Chatham County Small Business Center, Chatham County Cooperative Extension and the CCCC Sustainable Agriculture Program with support from NC Growing Together.

Mondays, October 1 – November 19 | 6:00 – 8:30 pm

Central Carolina Community College | Pittsboro Campus, Building 42, Room 108

This eight week series will enable experienced food and farming entrepreneurs to gain the skills needed to craft a new business plan to diversify, expand or better manage their existing operation. Students will gain greater understanding of finance, marketing and management tools needed to successfully operate their business. Registration for the full eight week session is recommended for the most comprehensive business plan. Each session builds on the content from the previous session. Instructors will feature local case studies and guest speakers.

Download flier (.pdf)

The course is free but pre-registration is required.  Register online at

The Business of Organic Farming Series

Presented by Pitt Community College Small Business Center, the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS), and NC Cooperative Extension 

Five free, in-depth training sessions on what it means for a farm to be organically certified, how to obtain and maintain organic certification, the business planning of organic farm operations, as well as record-keeping and organic product pricing and marketing. Students who complete all five sessions will have access to an on-farm consultation with CEFS Farming Systems Specialist, Melissa Bell.

The following classes are stand-alone trainings, but you are highly encouraged to attend all five:

Wednesday October 10, 6:00 -9:00 pm | Introduction to Organic Certification
Wednesday October 17, 6:00 -9:00 pm | Record Keeping for Certified Organic Operations
Wednesday October 24, 6:00 -9:00 pm | Pricing Your Product
Wednesday October 31, 6:00 -9:00 pm | “Outside of the Box” Marketing
Wednesday November 7, 6:00 -9:00 pm | Promoting Organic with Social Media Apps

This training is tailored for farmers with existing farm operations who have an interest in becoming organically certified, but is open to anyone interested in the subject.

For more information or to register, visit and search ”organic farming,” or contact Gail Nichols at (252)-493-7625 or


For information about the LFE initiative please contact Laura Lauffer at or 919-444-1478.