Farm Viability

Building and sustaining

STRONG FAMILY FARM BUSINESSES

Developing capacity

Oregon Tilth works hand-in-hand with farms to determine their business-related needs. From financial planning to understanding the costs of production, we provide guidance, capacity-building resources, and learning opportunities to fine-tune your farm business.

We empower people just starting out as well as seasoned farmers transitioning to organic production. Our work helps organic producers develop smart business practices and strategies. We help you define and link your known farm business gaps with economic opportunities. With technical know-how and a solid business plan, farmers are better equipped to jump into emerging markets for organic crops and products.

Our capacity-building initiatives focus on keys for successful business planning: cost analysis, financial systems management, investment analysis, and strategic planning.

Technical assistance

Farm owners trained in business management skills — along with access to appropriate business planning tools — can engage and plan for their farm’s economic futures with greater confidence. We provide targeted technical assistance to support organic operations that need support developing their business practices. Oregon Tilth also offers in-person and remote farm business workshops, intensives, and training on the following topics:

  • Organic pest and weed management strategies
  • Organic nutrient management
  • Soil health
  • Cover crop strategies
  • Understanding production costs (enterprise analysis)
  • Business planning
  • Recordkeeping

Continuing education

Oregon Tilth supports, develops, and distributes farm business-focused curriculum and workshops nationwide.

We work with Oregon State University (OSU) to develop learning opportunities on farm business management through an eight-week long course — Growing farms: Successful whole farm management — and in-person workshops that provide lessons learned about labor, cash flow analysis, marketing, financing, and liability. Additionally, we’ve invested $100,000 over four years to help fund an organic extension program within OSU’s Center for Small Farms and Community Food Systems. The program will develop research and learning opportunities for organic annual and perennial crop production, organic livestock, farm business strategies and other focus areas.

Cranberry Growers
Oregon Tilth works with cranberry farmers in Washington state Photo by Drew Katz

For over a decade, we’ve sponsored the annual Farmer to Farmer Exchange of the Pacific Northwest, supporting peer knowledge-sharing to help farmers build resilient farm businesses. Bringing farmers together to learn from each other’s first-hand experiences of what works — and what doesn’t — is of deep value. We’re deepening our commitment to expanding peer learning with the launch of our farm mentorship program in 2018-2019.

Research

Oregon Tilth works with several partners to develop decision-making tools for organic production. In collaboration with Oregon State University, we developed the Organic Fertilizer and Cover Crop Calculator, a free online tool that helps farmers compare the nutrient values and costs of cover crops, fertilizers, and compost.

Also, our research is designed to create implementation guides and handbooks — taking data-tested ideas and putting them into practice — for organic producers.

Education / Request

Get technical support and expertise

Interested in having Oregon Tilth provide a training, workshop or webinar? Want a staff member to attend and present at an upcoming event?
Send us an email at <http://www.privatedaddy.com/?q=H1ZhQhhnfXABMA9OPnBNUm9-2BUjdDQ00-3D_19>.

Contact Us