Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words


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Latino Farmer Conference in Monterey, California Draws Nearly 300 Attendees

Hosted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Center for Appropriate Technology

 

November 20, 2016

A workshop was offered on beekeeping.

California's second annual Growing Together Latino Farmer Conference was held in Monterey, Calif., to provide tools and resources to help farmers and ranchers be successful on their land.

Nearly 300 farmers are in attendance, which is being conducted in Spanish and translated into English for all attendees.

"The resources and people here today helped me achieve the success that I have now," said Javier Zamora, farmer and keynote speaker. "They are key to your success as a farmer or rancher as well."

Hosted by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the conference is open to all farmers and ranchers and is translated into English, with translation headsets. Conducting the conference in Spanish provides an enriched learning experience for much of the targeted Latino audience.

"Hispanic farmers and ranchers are a dynamic growing demographic in California and this conference aims to help Spanish-speaking farmers share, learn and grow in their native language," said Carlos Suarez, state conservationist for USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in California.

Efficient water use was another timely workshop topic.

Three different workshops follow an opening keynote address by Zamora, an organic farmer and leading conservation steward and educator. Each attendee has an opportunity to attend two subjects of interest. The workshops include: Access to Capital and USDA Resources, Soil Health, Efficient Use of Water, Beekeeping, and Marketing. The conference will conclude with a Latino farmer panel representing a diverse cross section of California agriculture.

This is the second year of this conference in California.

NCAT, a nonprofit, has been promoting sustainable living for over 35 years. In recent years, their agriculture work has focused on small-scale intensive farming, urban farming, local foods, and assistance to small farmers and beginning and new farmers.

NRCS is the lead USDA partner involved. NRCS has provided leadership in a partnership effort to help America's private landowners and managers conserve their soil, water and other natural resources since 1935. For more information on NRCS, visit http://www.nrcs.usda.gov.

 

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