Managing risk in organic grain farming happens at every level. While it may seem to begin with the production systems that the farmer puts in place, experienced growers will tell you that successful organic systems begin with understanding the farmer, the farmer’s resource base, and how the farmer will develop their organic system plan.
This part of the workshop series, Managing Risk in Organic Grain Production, was held at Goldmine Farms in Pana, Illinois on July 28, 2016. Goldmine Farms is owned and operated by Jack Erisman, who has been farming organically since the early 1970s and now grows over 2000 acres of organic grains, from yellow corn for tortillas to the rare perennial intermediate wheatgrass, and also raises grass-fed beef.
Dave Bishop of PrairiErth Farm delivers a presentation on the importance of diversity in organic farming systems.
Gary McDonald, an organic consultant, delivers a presentation on weed management in organic grain cropping systems and how weed management is key to a successful yield.
Harriet Behar, organic specialist with MOSES, delivers a presentation on crafting organic system plans for your grain farm.
Jack Erisman, veteran organic farmer and owner of Goldmine Farm, presents a farm tour where he discusses his double seven year rotation and field management of organic grain crops. He explains the importance of the farmer’s relationship with the land, the importance of diversity in organic systems, and how those culminate in the creation of an organic systems plan and intensive rotations in organic production systems.