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The “Business” of Farming – Transforming the Vision into a Financially Viable Operation

Our Sonoma County ag entrepreneurs are approaching the end of their journey as participants in this first group of the UCCE’s Beginning Farmers & Ranchers training program. Over the past six months, they’ve been exposed to many facets of agriculture, from dairying to hydroponic tomatoes, small scale grains to goat cheese; and have had to face the underbelly of the “running your own business” beast – business planning. MORE

Arturo Ibleto, a Bella Life in Sonoma County

Arturo Ibleto, who drifted into Petaluma 63 years ago as a penniless immigrant from war-torn Italy, today is one of Sonoma County’s most-beloved and revered citizens, a bigger-than-life character whose outsized personality is matched only by the prodigious portions of pasta he serves. MORE

Sonoma County Fair’s Top Exhibitors Honored at Farm Bureau Foundation’s Awards Dinner

Sonoma County Fair’s cream-of-the-crop took the stage at the Sonoma County 4-H and FFA Awards Dinner where Suzanne Amaral of Sonoma and Michelle McClure of Inverness in Marin County were named the outstanding Sonoma County Fair exhibitors for 2012. MORE

Small-Scale Grain Renaissance in North Coast Region

In 2009, the town of Willits in Mendocino County was one of the first communities to assess its self-sufficiency in terms of food security, and to act on it through the Willits Econo mic Localization program. With funding, an ambitious Americorps VISTA member, and support from the community, 10,000 lbs. of grain were sold the first year to local individuals and restaurants, and four silos built to store grain. MORE

Sonoma County Harvest Fair Entry Guidebooks Available Online

The annual Sonoma County Harvest Fair, home of the world championship grape stomp, is just around the corner and you are invited to participate in this year’s exhibits. You can enter an apple from the tree in your backyard, an elegant table setting, woodcraft, dahlia, or your best zucchini. Much like the Sonoma County Fair, the Harvest Fair hosts several competitive exhibits. This means that, by putting your hobby or skill to work, you could earn a blue ribbon, cash prizes or at the very least free entrance to this year’s event. MORE

CPR / First Aid / AED Training

A series of training courses focusing on CPR, First Aid and AED (Automated External Defibrillator) will be offered in September.The sessions will provide training to respond to accidents and sudden illnesses in emergency medical situations. The Spanish class will be held Tuesday, September 25 and the English class will be on Wednesday, September 26. Both classes are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be located at Farm Bureau: 3589 Westwind Blvd., Santa Rosa. MORE

Sept. 29 is Deadline for California Farm Bureau’s Photo Contest

The deadline is fast approaching for the 31st annual California Farm Bureau Photo Contest. Entries close Sept. 29. The contest gives amateur photographers who are Farm Bureau members an opportunity to capture photos that best highlight California agriculture. New for 2012, contributing members of the California Bountiful Foundation are also eligible to enter. The Grand Prize winner will earn a cash prize of $500, while prizes will also be awarded to first- and second-place winners in each of five categories. First-place winners will receive $250 and second-place winners will receive $100. MORE

Sonoma County’s Agricultural Heritage Celebrated at Farm Bureau’s “Love of the Land.”

There were nearly 1,000 people celebrating the agricultural bounty of Sonoma County at Farm Bureau’s “Love of the Land” held at Richard’s Grove and Saralee’s Vineyard where the county’s beauty was on full display among ancient oaks and sweeping vineyard vistas. MORE

Wilson Artisan Wineries Awards $17,100 in Scholarships to Children of Sonoma County Vineyard Workers

Twenty students from Sonoma County were selected recipients of the Wilson Artisan Wineries Children of Vineyard Workers Scholarships, a unique program to assist the children of vineyard workers in their pursuit of higher education. MORE

MALT Saves Critical Pastureland for Moretti Family’s Organic Dairy

Marin Agricultural Land Trust (MALT) helped save a Marin organic dairy near the town of Tomales when it permanently protected a 126-acre property. Second-generation dairy farmers Monique and Mike Moretti had leased this critical piece of farmland for 16 years and transitioned its pasture to organic along with the dairy last year. MORE

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To represent, protect and advance the social, economic and educational interests of the farmers and ranchers of Sonoma County.