The Appalachian Beginning Forest Farmer Coalition is a network of forestland owners, universities, and governmental and non-governmental organizations that share a common goal of improving agroforestry production opportunities and farming capabilities among forest farmers. Our collective aim is to increase awareness of forest-grown medicinal plants through education and relationship building, and support conservation efforts through stewardship of existing plant populations and forest farming of these native botanicals.
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Training and Support
Hands-on workshops on all aspects of operations: choosing and preparing a site, management planning, organic production and certification, forest grown verification, best handling and processing practices, value added production techniques, forest farming business planning and record keeping. Unique opportunities to see value-added facilities and productive forest farms.
This Coalition clearinghouse website houses a wide array of online and video resources for forest farmers on diverse topics from industry basics to cultivation to value added production and beyond. The coalition will also help link members to free and reduced rate seed distribution programs and house an equipment share forum to assist growers in accessing tools for harvest and processing. Bi-annual Appalachian Forest Farmer Chronicle.
Forest farmer and industry stakeholder meetings will offer opportunities for growers to connect with buyers, organic certifiers, representatives from verification and other labeling programs.
Forest farmer to forest farmer mentorship program. Access to university extension and other agency personnel for FAQs and assistance with site and habitat management planning.
Appalachian Sustainable Development, Blue Ridge Woodland Growers, Rural Action, United Plant Savers, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, The USDA National Agroforestry Center (NAC), Virginia Tech, Penn State, NC State, USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture