In 2016, FairShare CSA Coalition, in partnership with Dane County UWEX and UW Madison, started working with diversified organic vegetable farmers and the WI Department of Workforce Development (WDW) to develop an Organic Vegetable Grower Apprenticeship, which will soon be the second registered agricultural apprenticeship in the nation.
One of the main goals of the apprenticeship, in addition to training new organic farmers, will be to establish relationships between aspiring and established farmers that can lead to mutually beneficial long-term employment, and even farm succession opportunities. This new apprenticeship will include roughly 2,500 hours of hands-on learning in the field with 144 hours of classroom instruction in diversified organic vegetable production.
Project staff are working with a group of 12 experienced farmers and the WI DWD Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards to complete the apprenticeship design in 2017, with a goal of matching the first farmers and apprentices in the spring of 2018.
If you are interested in either teaching or apprenticing, please contact Claire Strader at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This work is funded in part through a Specialty Crop Block Grant and the Blooming Prairie Foundation.