Photo taken at Golden Glen Creamery / Jensen & Son Dairy in Bow, WA

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Featured Farmer - Sarita Schaffer, Director at Viva Farms

Sarita Schaffer, the Director of Viva Farms in Burlington, WA, was the first person to say yes, come on up. So on Friday July 1st I got to see Viva Farms and talk with Sarita and six other farmers. I had a blast and hope to go back soon.

Here's Sarita's engaging and educational response to my question "What is a farmer?" She describes the many hats that modern farmers wear every day.

Everybody gave me such a big welcome and I drove away feeling blessed and intoxicated on inspiration about where this whole idea could lead.

Check out Viva Farms blog because it's a wealth of information.

I don't want to mess with an already fine wheel so here's an existing quote describing the mission of Viva Farms in a nutshell:

"Viva Farms is a project of, an international non-profit dedicated to recruiting, training and financing the next generation of sustainable farmers. The Viva Farms Incubator Program strengthens new and immigrant farmers by helping them overcome four common barriers to farm entry: 1) access to education, training and technical assistance; 2) access to capital and credit; 3) access to land; and 4) access to markets. Viva Farms offers bilingual Cultivating Success sustainable farming and agricultural business planning courses in partnership with WSU Skagit Extension and WSU's Latino Farming Program."

Graduates of the Cultivating Success series are provided the opportunity to implement their farm business plans (developed in the Agricultural Entrepreneurship course) at the Viva Farms Incubator Farm, located at the Port of Skagit. Incubator farmers enjoy access to greenhouse space, cultivation equipment, wash/process/pack facilities, technical assistance with organic production and business development and support with marketing, sales and distribution."

"Viva Farms is 2/3 of the way through the 3 year transition period for WSDA Organic certification. We employ cultural, biological, and mechanical practices that conserve resources, promote ecological balance, and promote biodiversity. We do not apply any pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or artificial fertilizers. In 2012, we will submit all of our farm records to the WSDA for Organic certification."


We can support Viva Farms by making tax deductible donations on their Donate page.

If you live in the area you can subscribe to receive a CSA food box.

If you don't live in the area but know someone who does why not give them the gift of a CSA food box? How cool would that be?!

Volunteer, arrange to go yourself or bring a friend or group.

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