Registration continues for 2015 Appalachian Farm School for WNC farmers

From press release:



CULLOWHEE, N.C. – Registration continues and spaces are filling up for the 2015 Appalachian Farm School, a pilot program to centralize agricultural business training in a single program for farmers in the seven western counties of North Carolina. The course begins January 29 and ends April 9, 2015, and takes place on alternating Thursday evenings from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The first course will take place at the Swain County Extension Center and subsequent class locations will be determined by proximity to participants.

The AFS is a program of the Western North Carolina Food Policy Council (WNCFPC) with support from the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina. The program’s goal is to build a “one-stop” program in which farmers are able to access low-cost agribusiness resources from around the region.

Courses and workshops will be taught by professionals from the region and by state agency representatives, and will cover topics such as GAP certification and food safety regulations; basic agribusiness planning; marketing; production and pricing for market demand; soil and pest management; and legal and insurance issues.

The AFS relies on expert teachers from partners such as Cooperative Extension, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, North Carolina Rural Entrepreneurship through Action Learning (NCREAL), TenBiz, Southwestern Community College’s Small Business Center, and Western Carolina University’s Public Policy Institute.

The cost for the full three-month program is $75.00, which includes dinner during each class and all materials. Registration is available online at

WNCFPC, founded in 2011, brings together agriculture and food security representatives in Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Jackson, Macon, Swain and Haywood counties to address regional needs around agricultural and food security issues.  A similar program offering training for food banks, soup kitchens, and shelters will be offered later in 2015.

For more information about the Appalachian Farm School, please visit or contact Emily Edmonds at or 828.399.0297.


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