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Compiled List of Food System & Ag Webinars & Distance Learning Programs

February 20, 2012

Duncan Hilchey of New Leaf Agricultural Publishing & Consulting compiled an impressive list of Webinars and Distance Learning Programs for Food System and Agricultural Development Professionals in North America.

Most are free, but a few require registration or payment as noted below.  New Leaf plans to create an online annotated keyword searchable archive of online educational programs (available free at AgDevONLINE). If anyone is interested in helping with this project or has students who can volunteer, contact Duncan.


American Farmland Trust: Planning for Food and Agriculture: Taking a Systems Approach Webinars

  • State and regional planning
  • County and community-based planning

American Farmland Trust (New York chapter)

  • Planning for Agriculture in New York: A Toolkit for Towns and Counties
  • Making the Most of Planning for Agriculture
  • Helping a “New Generation” Succeed in Farming
  • Slicing and Dicing Our Way to New Jobs and Economic Opportunities
  • Exploring Alternate Ways to Protect Farmland
  • When Local Food Is Illegal: Keeping Zoning Farm- Friendly
  • Buy Local First: How to Keep Public Food Dollars in Your Community

American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment

  • Farm to Campus: The Successes and Challenges of Sourcing Local and Sustainable Food
  • Special note: this is a recording of a webinar, but unclear how permanent it is on this website.

American Planning Association’s

  • Planning and Community Health Research Center
  • Healthy Communities Webinar Series
  • Webinar 2: Planning for Food Access and the Regional Food Systems

ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture Video Archive

  • Rural Energy for America Program (REAP): Financing for Clean Energy in Rural Montana
  • Is Whole Farm Revenue Insurance Right for Your Farm? – Adjusted Gross Revenue-Lite Insurance
  • Free and open to the public. Current archive includes:
  • Sustainable Apple Production —A Beginner’s Guide
  • Is USDA’s AGR-LITE Insurance Program Right for You?
  • Innovative No-Till: Using Multi-Species Cover Crops to Improve Soil Health
  • Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food
  • Grass-finished Beef: Production & Marketing
  • Potential Bioenergy Production via Thermochemical Conversion
  • All About Farm Energy Audits
  • Local Food Systems 101
  • Farm-Scale Biodiesel Production: Taxes & Financial Incentives
  • Onion Power: Potential Production of Biofuels from Onions and other Vegetables
  • DIY Biodiesel: Keeping It Safe, Keeping It Legal
  • From the Farm to the Farmers’ Market
  • Making Organic Small Grains Work on Your Farm
  • Getting Started in Farm-Scale Biodiesel Production
  • Grow Montana ~ Montana Food System Notes
  • Sheep and Goats: What They Can Do for You!
  • Hoop Houses For Extending Your Growing Season

Center for Environmental Farm Systems Webinars

SARE PDP Training the Trainers in Community-Based Food Systems

  • Webinar 1: Communication and Community Team Building for Local Food Systems
  • Webinar 2: Creative Approaches to Local Food Systems Projects

Certified Organic Associations of British Columbia

Archived Webinars:

  • Breaking Down Market Barriers
  • Transition Towns
  • What Happens When the Honeybees Disappear?
  • Rethinking Economic Development: Using Standard Tools to Promote a Local Food Economy
  • Innovative Concepts & Techniques for Successful Weed Management in Organic Cropping
  • Using Grandin-like Principles in Livestock Production: small things sure can make a difference
  • Rosy Smit – Soil Nematodes and Their Control
  • Utilizing Cover Crops in Organic Production
  • Stock Free Organic Farming

East Coast Agritourism Webinars (North Carolina State University)

  • Introduction to Agritourism
  • Assessing Your Resources: Is Agritourism Right for Your Farm?
  • Marketing Basics: Positioning Your Agritourism Operation for Success
  • Creating the Customer Experience: Tips for Agritourism Businesses
  • Agritourism and the Internet: Social Media 101

EPA: Brownfields and Urban Agriculture Reuse Special Webinar

  • Policy Barriers and Incentives to Reusing Brownfields for Community Gardens and Urban Agriculture

eXtension/eOrganic Webinars

Current archive includes:

  • Why Eat Organic: Live Broadcast from the Illinois Specialty Crops
  • Reduced Tillage in Organic Vegetable Production: Successes, Challenges, and New Directions
  • Microbial Food Safety Issues of Organic Foods
  • Starting Up Small-Scale Organic Hops Production
  • Dryland Organic Agriculture Symposium from the Washington Tilth Conference 2011
  • Tracking Your Produce–For Your Business and Health
  • Healthy Soils for a Healthy Organic Dairy Farm — Broadcast from 2011 NOFA-NY Organic Dairy Conference
  • Root Media and Fertility Management for Organic Transplants
  • Plan for Marketing Your Organic Products
  • How to Breed for Organic Production Systems
  • Flooding and Organic Certification
  • Stockpiling Forages to Extend the Grazing Season on Your Organic Dairy
  • Fly Management in the Organic Dairy Pasture
  • Using Small Grains as Forages on Your Organic Dairy
  • Third Party Audits for Small and Medium Sized Meat Processors
  • A Novel Strategy for Soil-borne Disease Management: Anaerobic Soil Disinfestation (ASD)
  • Integrated Pest Management in Organic Field Crops
  • The Evolution, Status, and Future of Organic No-Till in the Northeast US
  • USDA ERS 2011 Organic Farming Systems Conference Webinars
  • Local Dirt: Beyond Marketing. Find Buyers, Sell Online, Source & Buy Product…Yourself
  • GMO Contamination: What’s an Organic Farmer to Do?
  • North Carolina’s Statewide Initiative for Building a Local Food Economy
  • Grafting for Disease Management in Organic Tomato Production
  • Shades of Green Dairy Farm Calculator
  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions Associated with Dairy Farming Systems
  • Assessing Nitrogen Contribution and Rhizobia Diversity Associated with Winter Legume Cover Crops in Organic Systems
  • Using Winter Killed Cover Crops to Facilitate Organic No-till Planting of Early Spring Vegetables
  • Using Cover Crops to Suppress Weeds in Northeast US Farming systems
  • Transitioning Organic Dairy Cows off and on Pasture
  • Greenhouse Gases and Agriculture: Where does Organic Farming fit?
  • Impact of Grain Farming Methods on Climate Change
  • Setting up a Grazing System on Your Organic Dairy Farm
  • Maximizing Dry Matter Intake on Your Organic Dairy Farm
  • How to Calculate Pasture Dry Matter Intake on Your Organic Dairy Farm
  • Late Blight Control in Your Organic Garden
  • Late Blight Control on Organic Farms
  • Increasing Plant and Soil Biodiversity on Organic Farmscapes
  • Cover Crop Selection
  • The Economics of Organic Dairy Farming in New England
  • Estimating Plant-Available Nitrogen Contribution from Cover Crops
  • Planning for Flexibility in Effective Crop Rotations
  • Using NRCS Conservation Practices and Programs to Transition to Organic
  • Planning Your Organic Farm for Profit
  • A Look at the Newly Released Organic Pasture Rule
  • Organic Blueberry Production
  • High Tunnel Production and Low Cost Tunnel Construction
  • Getting EQIPed: USDA Conservation Programs for Organic and Transitioning Farmers
  • Organic Certification of Research Sites and Facilities
  • Grafting Tomatoes for Organic Open Field and High Tunnel Production
  • Undercover Nutrient Investigation: The Effects of Mulch on Nutrients for Blueberry
  • ABCs of Organic Certification      Watch   Jim Riddle, University of Minnesota

eXtension/Niche Meat Processor Assistance Network Webinars…

Mobile Slaughter Units

  • Mobile Processing Units: What’s the State of the Art?
  • Mobile Poultry Processing Units in CA, MT, and VT
  • USDA-FSIS Webinars on Mobile Units

Farmers Markets Coalition Webinars

  • Measuring the Mob: Getting Reliable Visitor Counts December 7th, 2011
  • Markets as Business Incubators: Strategies to Grow Your Vendor Base
  • 6050W and Farmers Markets: Electronic Payment Reporting Requirements.
  • Protecting Board Members & Learning the Nitty Gritty of Statewide Insurance Programs.
  • Making the Most of Your Market Insurance Policy & Minimizing  Market Liability Risk.
  • Producer Liability:  Understanding & Communicating Vendors’ Risks & Insurance Needs.
  • Demystifying Farmers Market Risk & Being a Smart Insurance Shopper.
  • EBT and Nutrition Outreach: Practical Advice from Successful Programs.
  • Food Safety First: GAPs and Food Safety Issues for Farmers Markets. A
  • Measuring Success: Market Record-Keeping and Evaluation.
  • Sowing Value, Reaping Rewards: Recruitment, Services, and Administrative Systems for Successful Membership Organizations.
  • Best Board Practices and Meetings that Matter: An Introduction to Nonprofit Governance.
  • Strategic Planning in the Real World: how to Put No Staff, No Money, and Big Dreams to Work for Your Organization.

Foundation Center: Training Class Webinars

  • Before You Seek a Grant
  • Finding Foundation Support for Your Education
  • Foundations and Their Role in Philanthropy
  • Grantseeking Basics
  • Guide to Online Grantseeker Resources
  • How to Approach a Foundation
  • Introduction to Corporate Giving
  • Introduction to Finding Funders
  • Introduction to Fundraising Planning
  • Principios de la escritura de propuestas
  • Proposal Budgeting Basics
  • Proposal Writing Basics
  • Your Board and Fundraising

Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future Distance Learning Course

  • Food Production, Public Health and the Environment that is taught as a distance learning course.  (Not a webinar but each of the 8 modules has slides and a mp3 audio.)

National Conference of State Legislatures Webinar…

Charting a Course toward Good Food and Good Business: State Options

  • Healthier people and a more thriving economy can result from strengthening food systems.

National Good Food Network Webinars

NGFN webinars take place the third Thursday of each month, 3:30-4:45 ET (unless otherwise noted). Current archive includes:

  • Two Revolutionary Tools for Beginning Farmers
  • Financing Food hubs: Dozens of Ideas
  • The Farmer and the Dell®: Technology for Good Food
  • Clearing the Roadblocks: Market-Based Strategies for Getting Good Food to All Communities
  • Local Food in Retail – Two Models, One Goal
  • Food Hubs: Viable Regional Distribution Solutions
  • Fair Food: Growing a Healthy, Sustainable Food System for All
  • “Healthy” – Institutions and Consumers as Buyers of Good Food
  • The Economics of Regional Meat – Interactive Panel Discussion
  • The Economics of Regional Meat
  • Want to Get Results? You Get What You Measure!
  • Getting Banks to “Yes” with Small, Diversified Farms
  • Leveraging Existing Infrastructure for Significant Food System Change: Food Hubs, Regional Distribution, Farm to School, and more
  • Real Food into University Cafeterias: a Billion Dollar Challenge
  • The Business of Food Hubs: Planning Successful Regional Produce Aggregation Facilities
  • Food Safety Webinar: United Fresh Produce GAP Harmonization Initiative
  • Towards Local and Regional Sourcing – Sysco and Chipotle
  • Healthy Urban Food Enterprise Development Center
  • Building Local Government Support for Good Food
  • School Food FOCUS
  • Linking Diverse Communities Through Healthy Food: Examples from Metropolitan Areas
  • Building Regional Food Systems, Part 2: Creating Networks and Measuring Impacts
  • Building Regional Food Systems, Part 1: Foundational Definitions and the Northeast
  • Linking Diverse Communities Through Healthy Food: Examples from the Southwest
  • Third-Party Certification
  • Building the Supply of Healthy Foods – Experiences and Tools from the Field
  • Community Food Enterprise
  • An Introduction to the  National Farm to School Network
  • Good Food at Retail – Models of Success
  • Food Safety – An Interactive Briefing
  • USDA Programs and Funding Opportunities
  • Innovations in Value Chain Infrastructure-Red Tomato
  • NGFN/Sysco Partnership
  • Aggregation/Distribution: Appalachian Sustainable Development

National Farm to School “Lunch Bites” Webinars

Current archive includes:

  • Farm to School and Farm-Based Education
  • The Lunch Box: Healthy Tools to Help All Schools
  • School Food Transformation at the Los Angeles Unified School District
  • Farm to School: Cooking with Children in the Classroom
  • Farm to School Month Across the Nation
  • Farm to School for parents: How to get involved
  • Making the Most of Farm to School Month
  • Farm to School Innovations in the Mid-Atlantic Region
  • Evaluating your Farm to School program – Best practices and tools
  • Farm to School: A Legislative History

National Food Service Management Institute Training Courses

The National Food Service Management Institute offers Web Seminars (Webinars) that provide information on topics of importance to child nutrition professions. All NFSMI Webinars are recorded and placed in the Document Library after their original air dates. They are viewable through our Web site in the formats of Flash Player and Windows Media Videos.

Registration required. Current archive includes:

  • Building a Professional Team – 2009 BLT
  • Carbohydrate Counting for School Food Service Professionals
  • CARE Connection
  • Cooks for Kids
  • Expert Committee Recommendations on Childhood Obesity: Where Does CNP Fit?
  • Financial Management: A Course for School Food Service Directors
  • Fueling the School-Aged Athlete – Healthy Eating Scores!
  • Growing Your Professional Skills – 2008 BLT
  • Helping Child Nutrition Professionals Communicate Effectively with the Families of Special Needs Children
  • Nutrition 101: A Taste of Food and Fitness – 2005 BLT
  • Serving Safe Food in Child Care
  • Special Food for Special Kids
  • Update on Inborn Errors of Metabolism
  • Using Exchange Lists for Students with Diabetes in School Food Service
  • Special note: Continuing education courses offered online at NFSMI support the professional development and training of child nutrition program personnel at all levels of responsibility. The NFSMI’s online course system supports the research-based competencies, knowledge, and skills needed for excellence in child nutrition program management.
  • NFSMI online training provides self-paced online courses that may be completed over multiple sessions. Once a course has been completed, a certificate of completion is provided and may be used to satisfy certain certification and credentialing requirements. Additionally, NFSMI online courses are offered free of charge.

National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition Webinars

  • FARM Media Training Webinar
  • Share Your Farm Story: Tools and Tactics to Market Your Business and Connect with Media
  • Special note: this is a recording of a webinar, but unclear how permanent it is on this website.

Natural Resources Conservation Service Webinars

Dozens of webinars dealing with conservation, nutrient management, irrigation, grazing, terracing, organic production, and even benefits of grass-fed beef.

New Farmer Project Webinars (U. of Vermont)

Business & Financial Management

  • Employment and Labor Law Considerations for Farm and Food Businesses
  • Ins and Out of Insurance
  • Tax Time Techniques for Beginning Farmers

Crop Production Topics

  • Basic Soil Health and Soil Testing
  • Choosing Forage Crops for Fall Seeding
  • View the Intro to Plant Disease Webinar

Farm Safety

  • Farm Safety for the Growing Season

Food Safety

  • Practical Food Safety for Produce Farms
  • Managing Food Safety Risks in Agritourism

Land Access

  • Land Access for Beginning Farmers Part I
  • Land Access for Beginning Farmers Part 2 Webinar

Livestock Production Topics

  • The Bottom Line on Broilers
  • Raising Sheep in Your Future?
  • Livestock Slaughter and Meat Labeling Regulations webinar recording
  • Practical Poultry Production
  • Principles of Pastured Pork

Raw Milk Webinars

  • Rotational Grazing Basics


  • Building Your Online Presence
  • CSA Primer
  • Fine Food from the Farm
  • Managing Food Safety Risks in Agritourism
  • Price Your Product for Profit
  • Marketing to Restaurants

Regulation Webinars

  • Employment and Labor Law Considerations for Farm and Food Businesses
  • Land Access for Beginning Farmers Part 2 Webinar
  • Livestock Slaughter and Meat Labeling Regulations
  • Practical Food Safety for Produce Farms
  • Tax Time Techniques for Beginning Farmers

Northeast Beginning Farmers Project Webinars

  • Archived Recordings from the Lunchtime Learning Webinars, Summer 2011
  • Farm Finance: Helping New Farmers Scale the Capital Access Barriers
  • Alternative Farm Financing: Individual Development Accounts
  • Challenges to Beginning Farmers: Competencies & Skills Checklists
  • Measuring the Economic Impacts of Beginning Farmers

Public Health Law and Policy Webinar

  • Healthier Food For Sale: In this webinar, we discussed how to identify and leverage financing mechanisms to create healthier food options in local communities, and heard from people who have experience launching and sustaining successful projects

Rutgers NJAES Cooperative Extension Agritourism Webinars

  • Using Social Media for Farm Marketing I
  • Using Social Media for Farm Marketing II
  • Using Twitter to Market Your Farm

SARE (Nebraska) AgriMarketing Webinars

  • Workshops on Business Feasibility, Marketing Plans & Strategies
  • Successfully Transitioning from Commodity Agriculture to Value Added Agriculture—Part 1
  • Successfully Transitioning from Commodity Agriculture to Value Added Agriculture—Part 2
  • Using the Census and Other Sources to Define Market Potential—Part 1
  • Using the Census and Other Sources to Define Market Potential—Part 2

SARE (National) Continuing Education Program Webinars

  • Course 1: Sustainable Agriculture: Basic Principles and Concept Overview
  • Course 2. Strategic Farm/Ranch Planning and Marketing

SARE (North Central Region)

  • Scaling Up Local Sustainable Foods — Note: It is listed as “Archive of Sept 14th Webinar”
  • NCR-SARE Farmer Rancher Grant Webinar
  • NCR-SARE Farmer/Rancher Grants and Youth Educator and Youth Sustainable Agriculture Grants Webinar
  • NCR-SARE Research and Education Grant Program Webinar
  • NCR-SARE Graduate Student Grant Program Webinar

SARE (Southern): Perspectives of Systems Research Video Tutorial

Uses the advice and experiences of systems research experts to help you become a productive systems researcher and a more successful grant writer. The educational program is divided into five video modules:

  • Module 1 — Introduction and Meet the Exemplars
  • Module 2 — Getting Started in Systems Research
  • Module 3 — Building a Systems Research Team
  • Module 4 — Overcoming Challenges and Obstacles
  • Module 5 — Funding and Support

The Foundation Center’s Webinar Series for Nonprofit Startup Organizations

  • Legal Essentials of Starting a Nonprofit Organization
  • Board and Governance Issues for Startup Organizations
  • Defining Mission and Vision
  • Effective Program Development for Startup Organizations
  • First Fundraising Strategies for Startup Organizations

USDA Farm to School Webinars

  • Digging Through the Farm to School Resources
  • USDA Farm to School: Opportunities to Increase Local Foods in School Meal

USDA. Food and Nutrition Service Webinars

Chefs Move to Schools

USDA Nutrition-Related Webinars/Professional Development

Healthy Meals…



MetroFarm University

Consists of 35 interactive online classes focusing on entrepreneurial farming.

Midwest Permaculture

They also offer a full permaculture course with a heavy online component.

Price of Webinar Series — $195.00

Webinar Package Includes:

  • 8 Recorded Video Webinars – On-line and/or on Computer DVD (11 Hours)
  • 5 Different Teachers – Wonderful Diversity (scroll down)
  • 3 Additional Q&A Audio Webinars (5 hours)
  • PDC Course Textbook – Earth User’s Guide to Permaculture by Rosemary Morrow
  • 150 Study Questions
  • Over 2-Dozen Handouts from our Design Courses

Organic Farming Institute of British Columbia

Uses Moodle to offer online self directed studies for farmers. Prices unknown.

  • ORG 101: Introduction to Organic Soil Management and Nutrient Cycles
  • ORG 102: Organic Soil Management Practices and Transitioning to Organic Methods
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