Attendees of the 24th Annual Farming for the Future Conference will have the opportunity to network with more than 2,000 agriculture industry workers, students and community and business leaders, participate in workshops, trainings, exhibits and receptions showcasing regionally sourced foods and enjoy many unique special events. Highlighting the conference are two main addresses by well-known author/activist Frances Moore Lappé and conservation agronomist Ray “The Soils Guy” Archuleta.

Through the support of Tuscarora Organic Growers Cooperative, Four Seasons Produce and Mom’s Organic Market, the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) debuted the new PASAbilities Fund, which aims to support the attendance of established or experienced farmers interested in learning about and incorporating new sustainable practices into their operations. “Launching this Fund was critical to meet the needs of our regional farmers, so meeting its financial goal was a tremendous boost! The ongoing support and encouragement from these three amazing companies is absolutely heartwarming,” stated Lauren Smith, PASA’s Director of Development. The initial fund stands at $10,000 – enough to bring more than 65 farmers to the conference. The application for this fund is available at pasafarming.org/conference and the deadline to apply is 5pm on January 17, 2015.

PASA also supports the attendance of aspiring and new farmers through the Arias M. Brownback Memorial Scholarship Fund. Established in 2001, the fund grows each year through the generous donations of PASA members and friends. The fund has supported over 550 attendees since its inception. All scholarships available for the 2015 conference through this popular fund have already been allocated.

Other groups and partners provide support as well. The Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT), a humane farming and food safety nonprofit organization has established the Fund-a-Farmer Project to broaden opportunities for humane farmers in the United States. Through the new Fund-a-Farmer scholarships, FACT will award scholarships for livestock and poultry farmers to attend select sustainable agriculture or humane farming conferences, including PASA’s Farming for the Future Conference. More information can be found at fundafarmer.org/scholarships.

Other members of the PASA community also offer support through their own means, including FRESHFARM Markets and the Historic Lewes Farmers Market, to send their members to the conference each year. PASA is grateful to their continued support!

Special thanks to the conference’s leading sponsors Lady Moon Farms and Kimberton Whole Foods.

To learn more about the Farming for the Future Conference, visit pasafarming.org/conference. Pre-registration closes at 5 p.m. on January 26, 2015.