Farmer Assistance

Training and support for local, beginning, and aspiring farmers who use sustainable growing practices.

We believe that food is medicine -- medicine for our bodies, our community, and our planet. But in order for this to be possible, it’s essential that our local farms are healthy, biodiverse, and supported by the community. We support local, sustainable farmers through training and mentorship, offering a convenient wholesale market, and offering a variety of farming resources.

 

The GoFarm Incubator trains and mentors aspiring farmers and breaks down barriers of entry into farming by providing access to land, infrastructure, technical assistance, classroom curriculum, and training.

The program includes three tracks for aspiring farmers: Apprenticeships, Internships, and Externships.

The apprenticeship is a two-year program where apprentices manage their own farm plot and are taught how to develop and manage their own farm business from the ground up. They receive classroom curriculum focused on what they need to know to start their own farm (business planning, crop planning, farm management, technical skills, financial management, etc.), as well as access to farmland, farmer mentorship, and a sales avenue to sell through (GoFarm Local Food Share). After two years in the program, we help apprentices establish their own independent, sustainable farms outside of the program.

The internship lasts for one summer season, where interns gain farming experience by assisting apprentices and existing farmers in the fields. They also gain exposure to other aspects of the local food system including buying, distributing, and marketing of local food.

The externship lasts for one winter season, where externs enroll in classroom curriculum and learn about what's needed to create a viable farm business. They are coached through developing their own business and management plan for a future career in agriculture.

The GoFarm Incubator focuses on supporting veterans who are interested in a career in farming. We partner with the Denver Botanic Gardens - Chatfield to recruit veterans into the program and ensure this community is being reached.

The GoFarm Incubator is run in partnership with Jefferson County Conservation District, Denver Botanic Gardens, Sprout City Farms, and CSU-Extension.

 

This program provides local growers with access to necessary equipment without having to take on the burdens associated with ownership. With the ability to rent equipment at affordable prices, growers will be able to decrease their production costs and increase their return on investment. In addition, by sharing equipment across many different growers, the equipment will be well utilized, spending more time in the fields and less time sitting in storage. This program is a partnership between GoFarm and Jefferson Conservation District.

If you need equipment to rent, check out our equipment list! Each tool can be rented on a per day or per week basis. There is an easy check-out and return process for each item and fees vary per tool.

Due to COVID-19, we are temporarily suspending our equipment rental program. We are so sorry for the inconvenience, but are doing everything we can to keep our staff and apprentice farmers safe and healthy during this pandemic. As soon as we are able to loan out the equipment again (hopefully very soon), we will update this page!

Our local food share program supports many small, local farms by offering an avenue into the marketplace. Some farmers dedicate a portion of their crop to GoFarm each week, whereas others supply us food whenever their crop allows for it.

We allow our farmers to set their own prices for the food they sell to us. We appreciation and value the hard work they do every year, and believe in paying them a fair market price. In addition, the Local Food Share allows more time for the farmers to focus on what they do best, FARM, leaving the rest of the work to us!

 
 

Information on Organic and Sustainable Practice Standards

USDA Organic Standards

Intro to Organic Practices

USDA Sustainable Agriculture

Food Safety Resources

Produce Safety Alliance and FSMA

Project, Employee Health and Hygiene

GAP Certification (GoFarm does not require a GAP audit, however, we recomend that all farmers abide by this guide) 

 

Equipment

Jefferson Conservation Districts Equipment Share Program

Home Depot Equipment Retail

Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQUIP) An NRCS program that gives you government incentives to implement conservation practices on your land

 

Templates

Food Safety Plan Template

Business Plan Template

Pre-Planning Guide

Record Keeping

Grants and Funding

CO Specialty Crops Grant Application

Agricultural Workforce Development Program

 

Events/Trainings

FSMA Training (Food Safety)

Articles

10 Ways to be More Efficient on Your Small Farm

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GoFarm works to strengthen the local food system and build healthier communities. Through our three program areas (Farmer Assistance, Local Food Share, and Community Access) we support local, beginning, farmers, train/mentor aspiring farmers, and make healthy food more affordable and accessible to the community.

Through our Local Food Share program, community members sign up for a season of local, sustainable produce, and get to learn all about the food and the farmers throughout the growing season. You can sign up for the Local Food Share here.

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2018 Golden Farming Cooperative. Site by coppr media.