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Mount Vernon-area farm providing on-farm training opportunity for an aspiring farmer

For Release: March 26, 2018


Contacts:

Steve Carlson | Practical Farmers of Iowa | (515) 232-5661 | steve@practicalfarmers.org

 

MOUNT VERNON, Iowa – Donna Warhover of Morning Glory Farm is seeking to hire an employee for the coming growing season, and is willing to provide the right candidate with additional training on topics important for running a farm business.

Warhover is among 14 experienced farmers from around the state who have committed to hire an employee through Practical Farmers of Iowa’s Labor4Learning program. Each Labor4Learning trainer farm was approved by a committee of Practical Farmers members to serve as qualified teachers.

Donna raises vegetables, herbs, and eggs for Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares, four farmers markets, restaurants, chefs and college food service. Though not certified, they practice organic production and also use cover crops in the crop rotation. The farm hosts community and learning events throughout the year.

“I would like Morning Glory to be a place that offers not only hands-on experience, but also the opportunity to think through the ‘why we are doing it this way’ and explore how it can be done better,” Donna says.

The job opening with Morning Glory is full-time, starting in April. The primary work activities include seed starting, greenhouse and high tunnel management, planting, organic soil management, pest and weed management, harvesting, processing, and marketing the crops. Other responsibilities include preparing the site for hosting students, visitors, and other community events, working with volunteers, staffing the farmer’s market table and distributing CSA shares.

Full job details, dates and information on how to contact Morning Glory to apply can be found at practicalfarmers.org/labor4learning. To qualify as a trainee, the applicant must have a strong desire to learn; apply to and be hired by a trainer farm; and become a member of Practical Farmers of Iowa.

Having sufficient on-farm work experience is vital to the success of new farmers just starting on their own. Most on-farm employment opportunities, however, are limited in scope and don’t expose employees to the full range of skills needed to be successful.

Now entering its sixth year, Practical Farmers’ Labor4Learning program helps fill this need by connecting aspiring farmers seeking paid on-farm training with experienced farmers looking for eager employees.

In addition to their normal job responsibilities, those in the program receive training on topics such as record keeping, marketing and other skills important for running a farm business. At the start of employment, the trainer and trainee agree on a set of learning outcomes to address during the course of employment, beyond the normal job-related work activities.

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