Providing opportunities for capacity building by forging partnerships which helps to move towards a more sustainable food system.

It is the goal of the SARE Professional Development program to help identify and encourage collaborations with in the state between WVU Extension, WVSU, state agencies, local producers and associations, non-profits, processors, distributors and food service contractors.

Key Resources

Creating a Collaborative Marketing Strategy (Cornell, 2012, PDF)
Guidelines for farm owners who are looking to work jointly with other farms to access these new markets is outlined in this bulletin.

Success of the New North Florida Cooperative (USDA, 1999, PDF)
A success story about a group of local, limited-resource growers in Northern Florida who piloted a cooperative for the Farm to School initiative.

Cultivating Schools as Customers in a Local Market: A Regional Small Farmer Distribution Network (Florida A&M University Extension Programs, 2011, PDF)
This fact sheet describes a successful effort through collaboration of various public and private entities.

Supplemental Resources

WVU Small Farm Center (WVU Extension, 2009, website)
The Small Farm Center, under the WVU Extension Service, was founded in 2009 and strives to increase the farmer’s bottom line by helping him or her retain more of the dollar spent on food in his or her community.

Food and Things: A Producers Guide and Directory (WV Dept of Agriculture, 2002, website)
A quick online reference guide for consumers, retailers and tourists to assist them in purchasing West Virginia products.

West Virginia Farm to School Community Development Group (WV Community Development group, 2014, website)
West Virginia Farm to School Community Development Group is a collaboration of West Virginians a working together to create synergistic partnerships to advance farm to school efforts across the state.

National Farm to School Network (NFSN, 2014, website)
The National Farm to School Network (NFSN) is an information, advocacy and networking hub for communities working to bring local food sourcing and food and agriculture education into school systems and preschools.

West Virginia Farm & Food Coalition (WVFFC, 2014, website)
The mission of the West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition is to build, support and strengthen a statewide network of those involved in West Virginia’s local food economies, with the interconnected goals of improving access to healthy, locally-produced food for all West Virginians and helping viable food and farm businesses to grow.

West Virginia Farmers Market Association (WVFMA, 2014, website)
The mission of the WVFMA is to provide resources and support connections that enhance the economic growth and sustainability of West Virginia farmers markets.

WVFARM2U (The Collaborative for the 21st Century Appalachia, 2014, website)
Our Collaborative for the 21st Century Appalachia® is a grassroots organization concerned with preserving the small farm, the environment, and a more traditional way of life.

Gourmet Central (Diversified Nature Associates, Inc., 1989, website)
Manufacture gourmet food products using farm direct products.

Additional Resources

Here you will find additional sustainable agriculture education resources, networking partnerships and grant opportunities.

Educational Resources

  • West Virginia State University Research

  • W.Va. Dept of Agriculture

  • USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA)

  • USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
  • The Wallace Center

  • Leopold Center

  • The Kerr Center

  • National Center for Appropriate Technology

  • Rodale Institute

  • eXtension

  • Maryland Rural Enterprise Development Center

  • Small-Scale Intensive Farm Training Program

  • ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture Archived Videos

  • Other Grant/Loan Resources

  • USDA Grants and Loans
  • USDA Funding for Local and Regional Food Systems – April 2010 PDF
  • Rural Micro Entrepreneur Assistance Program

  • NLPA Sheep & Goat Fund

  • Whole Foods local producer loan program

  • Animal Welfare Approved grants for farmers

  • Organic Farming Research Foundation

  • Marketing | Financial Management
    Farm & Food Safety | Sustainable Agriculture