Amanda Austin and I at the 2017 TOFGA Conference – we first met at the 2010 Organic Conference!
Beginning and seasoned farmers and gardeners, it doesn’t matter, there will be ample opportunity to learn more at the statewide annual conference on February 1-3, 2018 in Georgetown, Texas. It will also be the celebration of the 25th anniversary for the non-profit organization, Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA),
TOFGA is focused on education and advocacy for Texas farmers, ranchers, and gardeners who practice organic and sustainable methods. They also have an online farmers resource collection that is a go-to for many farmers.
I first sought out TOFGA when I was looking for other local folks that were gardening organically beyond what I was reading in the first Rodale Organic Gardening magazines. Sure enough this organization was teaching organics and showcasing some of first organic products in Texas featuring the pioneers in composting and soil building.
In 2003, TOFGA was again helpful in locating organic farmers and ranchers as we were starting the Coppell Farmers Market. These connections were a sounding board and many members became my mentors over the years. In 2009, as the Secretary of the TOFGA Board, I had a first hand experience with organizing the conference.
Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association Annual Conference – Feb 1-3, 2018
TOFGA’s Annual Conference brings together seasoned veteran organic farmers, ranchers, dairyman, and other food and fiber producers, along with consumers, advocates, students, and new farmers and gardeners.
This is networking haven for anyone looking to learn more and get involved in the local food movement in Texas.
My favorite conference highlights are:
- Pre-Conference Workshops are high quality but low cost so make sure you take advantage of these. Some are held on a neighboring farm for hands-on learning.
- TOFGA Bookstore where there is a selection of highly-curated must-read books on farming, homesteading and gardening.
- Exhibit Hall where you can find farming tools and equipment, amendments and meet the state organizations, like Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.
- The Beginning Young Farmers network night – why not get to know these enthusiastic land stewards!
- The Farm-to-Table Banquet (featuring the Texas organic and sustainably raised products) and this year’s inspiring keynote will be Michael Abelman, a pioneer of the organic farming and urban agriculture movements.
- Regional Networking Lunch – DFW is Region 4 lead by Director, Marie Tedei of Eden’s Organic Garden Center and CSA Farm.
Register now for the 2018 TOFGA Annual Conference! Early Bird rates now through the January 8th.
Hundreds of farmers, ranchers, and gardening enthusiasts are expected to attend from all over Texas to share ideas, network, build community, and have fun! Hope to meet you there!