An ACORN Event

ACORN Farm Viability Winter Webinar Series 2016/2017

Date(s) December 6th, 2016, January 17th, 2017 and February 7th, 2017 - 8pm AST


ACORN Farm Viability Winter Webinar Series 2016/2017

Registration: free for ACORN members (join as an ACORN member and receive many more benefits!). For non-members, $25/per webinar or $65 for all 3 webinars! Recordings are only made available to ACORN Members. 

For all inquiries, please contact 

February 7th, 2017 - 8pm AST - Farm Finances: Setting Up and Managing Your Farm Financials with Chris Blanchard, Purple Pitchfork.  Sponsored by ACORN Network Partner - Bioenterprise Maritimes

Chris Blanchard provides insights into developing a robust business model for your farming operation. Chris will review the financial and management systems you need to grow a profitable farm, with information about making and monitoring a budget, creating and understanding financial statements, improving profitability, and avoiding financial train wrecks. 

THIS EVENT HAS ALREADY TAKEN PLACE - December 6th, 2016 - 8pm AST - Farm Strategies Using The Veggie Compass - John Hendrickson, University of Wisconsin. Sponsored by ACORN Network Partner, Johnny's Seeds

ACORN Veggie Compass Webinar Description - Weeds and insect and diseases are significant challenges facing vegetable farmers. The biggest challenge of all, however, is making a sustainable livelihood on a farm. Growing good quality produce and having a knack for selling go a long way but do not necessarily lead to a profitable and sustaining business. For that to happen you have to understand costs and set prices to ensure you get a return on your investment in seed, supplies, labor, and overhead. For diversified vegetable growers, this can be particularly difficult. Most diversified vegetable growers produce many different crops and sell through a variety of market channels, such as farmers’ markets, roadside stands, CSA, and wholesale. This complexity makes determining the profitability of all crops a significant challenge. Veggie Compass is a free spreadsheet program designed to help vegetable growers determine cost of production and profitability by crop and by market. John Hendrickson helped develop Veggie Compass and will use this webinar to explain how it can be used to actively manage for profit. He will discuss the data needed to use Veggie Compass, record keeping tips and tools, and the lessons he and his colleagues have learned from working with growers on Veggie Compass. He will also share success stories from growers who have used Veggie Compass to improve their financial performance. 

THIS EVENT HAS ALREADY TAKEN PLACE - January 17th, 2017 - 8pm AST - Too Many Rutabagas: Time and Productivity Management for Farmers with Chris Blanchard, Purple Pitchfork. Sponsored by ACORN Network Partner - Bioenterprise Maritimes

There’s always something to do on the farm, and nobody knows it better than the farmer. Chris Blanchard will show you ways to overcome the overload of information, tasks, and projects on your farm while you keep things from falling through the cracks with time and information techniques that will improve your business and your quality of life. 


Speaker Bios: 

Chris Blanchard provides consulting and education for farming, food, and business through Purple Pitchfork. As the owner and operator of Rock Spring Farm since 1999, Chris raised twenty acres of vegetables, herbs, and greenhouse crops, marketed through a 200-member year-round CSA, food stores, and farmers markets. Prior to 1999, Chris managed student farms, worked as an intern, packing house manager, plant breeding assistant, and farm manager, and provided consulting for a major organic processor, in California, Wisconsin, Maine, and Washington state. His workshops, writing, and consulting throughout the country about farm business concepts, food safety, organic vegetable production, and scaling-up have gained a reputation for fresh approaches, down-to-earth information, and honesty. For more information, visit

John Hendrickson conducts research, outreach and training programs for small-scale growers for the Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Among other responsibilities, he coordinates the Wisconsin School for Beginning Market Growers and is involved in the development of Veggie Compass, a whole farm profit management spreadsheet that helps growers identify costs of production and measures profitability by crop and by market. He also manages his own organic vegetable farm.