Our Atlantic Canada Program

The Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security was launched in February 2013 to help build the national movement to conserve and advance seed biodiversity, keep seed in the public domain, and promote ecological seed production. ACORN is proud to be the host organization for this work in Atlantic Canada!  Under this banner ACORN coordinates seed field days, events, workshops, research projects, and support for seed libraries. For information on national programs and resources, please visit seedsecurity.ca or semencessecures.ca. Steph Hughes is the Regional Coordinator for this program in Atlantic Canada. To receive updates and news about seedy events, activities and projects in Atlantic Canada, please send Steph an email. 

This program is made possible thanks to the vision and leadership of Gretchen Bauta, member of the Weston family. It is delivered by USC Canada, in partnership with Seeds of Diversity Canada and through the generous support of The W. Garfield Weston Foundation.

Farmer-to-Farmer Seed Mentorship Program

This program exists to help connect experienced seed growers with farmers looking to increase the scale, quality, and/or diversity of seed they are saving on-farm. Each season farmers are paired together for approximately 20 - 30 hours of mentorship between May 1 and November 30th. As part of this self-directed program, mentors and mentees work together - via phone, email, and field visits - to help mentees reach their seed growing goals.

For Mentee application, click here.
For Mentor application, click here.

Mentees will:
- have established farming/market gardening experience and an earnest interest in learning to grow good seed! 
- be set up to grow seed on their own farms/land in 2017 (this program doesn't offer hosted internships)
- participate in approximately 20 - 30 hours of mentorship over the course of the 2018 season
- have current ACORN farm membership for 2018
- work with their mentor to establish learning goals and communication strategies
- participate in an orientation, mid-season check-in, and evaluation w ACORN Coordinator
- complete basic "outcomes", including: sending 5 photos to ACORN, providing a short write up for our newsletter (on request), and - if possible - committing to one engagement to 'pay forward' seed learning.

Mentors will:
- have minimum 5 years seed growing experience and an earnest interest in supporting a fellow seed grower
- contribute approximately 20 - 30 hours of mentorship time and will be financially compensated for this time. 
- work with mentees to establish learning goals and communication strategies
- participate in an orientation, mid-season check-in, and evaluation w ACORN Coordinator
- complete (minimal) admin, including invoicing and time-keeping.

Regional Seed Bank / Seed Grow-out Program

The Atlantic Canada Regional Seed Bank was established in 2014 to increase supply and access to regionally adapted, significant varieties of vegetables, grains, and herbs. The seed bank is a partnership by ACORN, Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture, and Seeds of Diversity, and is located in Truro, NS. 20-25 organic and ecological growers in four Atlantic provinces support the bank, curating the collection, growing out the varieties to maintain and improve them, and contributing new varieties each year. The seed bank servies primarily Atlantic region farmers and would not exist without their hard work and careful stewardship of seed. 

If you'd like to contribute seed to the seed bank, please contact Steph Hughes (see below) to discuss your seed offerings.

Please click here to see the bank's 2018 inventory. Please click here to see the bank's 2018 "adoption list" of varieties that are in need of assistance to 1) increase volume available, 2) increase germination rate, 3) increase quality of older seed. All seed coming to the seed bank needs to be accompanied by some documentation. Please click here for our seed intake form.

Seed Libraries Support / Soutien aux bibliothèques de semences

In an ongoing effort to support partners running seed libraries and community seed collections, we've developed a "Seed Library Education Kit." It includes a large format (36" x 52") poster;  ~50 take-away (5" x 7") postcards; and a PowerPoint presentation with talking points. Please click here for more information and to order materials.

ACORN a conçu une Trousse éducative sur les bibliothèques de semences afin de continuer à appuyer ses partenaires qui gèrent des collections de semences communautaires. Celle-ci inclut une grande affiche (36 po X 52 po), 50 cartes postales à distribuer (5 po x 7 po) et une présentation PowerPoint (envoyée par courriel) accompagnée de points de discussion. Veuillez cliquer ici pour plus d’information ou commander du matériel.

Get in Touch!

  • ACORN Office main phone: 506-536-2867 (Moncton and Sackville)
  • ACORN Office toll-free: 1-866-322-2676
  • Regional Coordinator's Home Office: 902-453-4455
  • Email: seed@acornorganic.org
  • Twitter: @seedsecurityca