The third annual Growing Together Latino Farmer Conference is being held in Palm Desert, Calif. The annual conference is unique in that it is conducted in Spanish and translated into English, as needed for all attendees.
“I am happy to know that the USDA has taken the initiative to create a conference for Spanish speaking farmers and I hope it will continue to grow,” said Enrique Bautista, a farmer, and the conference keynote speaker.
Hosted by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the conference is open to all farmers and ranchers, yet is uniquely tailored towards Spanish-speaking growers. Conducting the conference in Spanish will provide an enriched learning experience.
“Hispanic farmers and ranchers are a dynamic growing demographic in California and this conference aims to help Spanish-speaking farmers share, learn and grow in their native language,” said Curtis Tarver, NRCS acting state conservationist.
The conference will take place from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday, November 7, 2017, at the UC Riverside Palm Desert Center, located at 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA. Attendees had to register in advance, as space was limited.
Three different workshops are following the opening keynote address by Bautista. The Bautista family of Mecca, Calif., grows organic dates and sells them in their store, at local farmers markets and online. The courses are held in two 90-minute blocks. This allows each attendee to choose two different subjects of interest throughout the day. The workshop topics cover Access to Capital and USDA Resources; Soil Health; Efficient Use of Water; Food Safety Requirements; Regulations for Farmworker Health and Safety; and Marketing. The conference will conclude today with a farmer panel representing a diverse cross-section of California agriculture.
In-person or over-the-phone interviews with organizers and attendees are still available today by calling Jonathan Groveman at (703) 980-1464.
NCAT, a nonprofit, has been promoting sustainable living for over 35 years. In recent years, their agriculture work has focused on small-scale intensive farming, urban farming, and local foods, and assistance to small farmers and beginning farmers and ranchers.
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is the lead USDA partner in this conference. NRCS has provided leadership in a partnership effort to help America’s private landowners and managers conserve their soil, water, and other natural resources since 1935. For more information on NRCS, visit www.nrcs.usda.gov.