The 2016 Midlands Farm Tour hosted by the Midlands Food Alliance, a program of Sustainable Midlands, will be held Saturday, May 21st from 11:00 am until 6:00 p.m. The tour is a self-guided, one day event. At each farm you can meet the farm families and staff, tour the property, explore what is harvested, and ask questions. Ticket price is $15 for a pass to see any farms on the tour. $10 early-bird tickets available until May 20th. Children under 10, WIC, SNAP and EBT beneficiaries and families are admitted to the entire tour free of charge.
Farm Tour sites include Terra Kotta Farms, Humble Farm, Bee Trail Farm, 6 Berry Farm, Patchwork Farm, Mercer House Winery, USC Community Farm & Garden, the SC State Farmers Market, Wright Farm, and Sandhills Heirlooms. Please note that some farms have livestock and honeybees on premises. Most farms will have goods for sale and a variety of items to sample.
The Midlands Food Alliance formed from a group of farmers, chefs, and eaters who cared about local food production because our region of South Carolina lacked an organized network of food-producing farmers and those who support them. South Carolina’s Making Small Farms Big Business Plan also stated that “the potential impact if every South Carolina resident purchased $5 of food each week directly from a farmer in the state would be about $1.2 billion”, yet “Many farmers selling direct to state consumers report that they have to explain to their customers what a carrot looks like when it comes out of the field, since many have never seen one before.” This farm tour is more than an event – it’s an opportunity to sow the seeds for positive social and economic change. Join the movement of growers, consumers, entrepreneurs and more who are dedicated to this vision of the Midlands.Be sure to also sign the Local Food Pledge at any farm stop on the tour, committing to spend $10 weekly on SC-grown products and support food systems planning in county and municipal plans.
Learn more about the farms, download the Midlands Local Farm and Food Guide, purchase your Farm Tour Ticket, or sign up to Volunteer on the tour at www.midlandsfarmtour.com.
Resource Rodeo for Farmers May 5th at State Farmers Market:
The Midlands Local Food Collaborative invites farmers and all interested in learning about what resources are available to farmers in South Carolina to the SC Farmer Resource Rodeo. The Resource Rodeo will be held on Thursday, May 5th, from 9:30am-3:30pm at the SC State Farmers Market (Phillips Market Center 3501 Charleston Highway, West Columbia, SC 29172). The Midlands Local Food Collaborative was formed in 2012 as a partnership between a number of local government, academic, and non-profit organizations whose common goal is to promote a vibrant and sustainable local food system in the region known as the SC Midlands. Resource Rodeo participants will learn about the resources and programs available to provide technical, financial, and educational assistance to SC farmers through federal, state, and local agencies and organizations and meet with representatives from these organizations. Lunch is included in the $20 registration fee, and the program is free to current participants of Clemson Extension’s New & Beginning Farmer Program. Sponsors of the event include AgSouth Farm Credit, ArborOne Farm Credit, and the SC Farm Bureau Federation.
USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service
USDA-Farm Service Agency
SC Department of Agriculture
SC Forestry Commission
Clemson Livestock Forage Extension
Clemson Organic Program
Clemson Sustainable Agriculture Program
Clemson Organic Farm
USC Center for Research in Nutrition and Health Disparities
Carolina Farm Stewardship Association
Midlands Food Alliance
Lowcountry Local First
ArborOne Farm Credit
SC Farm Bureau
SC Ag Council