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Good ideas for local vegetable producers

Boost produce marketing with what you learn at a three-day course designed to help experienced vegetable growers enhance their selling strategies. The course will help you develop practical, action-oriented marketing plans in time for the 2010 growing season. Learn how to select, implement, and evaluate marketing strategies that match your farm operations and budget. Follow up one-on-one mentoring is available for five course participants.

The class meets three Wednesdays, Jan. 27, Feb. 10 and Feb. 24 (March 3 snow day), 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at the Central Vermont Chamber of Commerce in Berlin. Each day will include hands-on activities, case studies, and presentations on marketing successes and challenges from a variety of farms. The course fee of $125 includes all books, course materials, lunch and refreshments.

Register by Jan. 4 for both the NOFA-Vt. (Northeast Organic Farmers Association of Vermont) Direct Marketing Conference (Jan. 9) and the course, and save $25. For more information, go to the NOFA-Vt. website (www.nofavt.org) and click on the "Marketing that Sells" link, or contact NOFA at info@nofavt.org or (802) 434-4122.

This marketing course is one of four integrated learning courses for intermediate to advanced organic and sustainable vegetable producers being offered by NOFA-VT through a Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program Grant. UVM Extension's Women's Agricultural Network is collaborating with NOFA on the marketing course. The other courses will be on soils, on-farm energy, and pest (insects, diseases, and weeds) management.

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