Today’s food and farming systems have succeeded in supplying large volumes of foods to global markets, but are generating negative outcomes on multiple fronts: widespread degradation of land and water and ecosystems, high greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity losses, persistent hunger and micro-nutrient deficiencies alongside the rapid rise of obesity and diet-related diseases, and livelihood stresses for farmers around the world.
Industrial agriculture and the industrial food systems that have developed around it are locked in place by structures which allow control to accrue to a limited number of players which reinforces their economic and political power.
We must transition from our current unsustainable farming methods to ones that work in cooperation with natural cycles. It is time to look at a farmer as both a provider of agricultural goods and as a participant in an ecological system. This agro-ecological system provides a number of public goods and services including: water, soil, energy, biodiversity, recreation, and carbon sequestration. By changing the way we farm, we can restore the health of our soil, water, and woods while providing for the food needs of our community in the face of a changing climate.
What is required is a model of agriculture based on diversifying farms and farming landscapes, optimizing biodiversity, stimulating interactions between and among different species, building long-term fertility, healthy agro-ecosystems, secure livelihoods: diversified agro-ecological systems.
The Horn Farm Center believes in the power of education. By partnering with local farmers and concerned citizens in our region, we teach and demonstrate how gardeners and farmers can establish healthy relationships with natural ecosystems to increase the quality and quantity of locally grown food, improve financial returns, and remove more carbon from the atmosphere. We are building a community of skilled land stewards who, by building soil fertility and restoring ecological balance to our place on this planet, are better able to feed our community in the face of economic and environmental uncertainty.
The Horn Farm Center is a leader in regenerative agriculture. We build community resilience by demonstrating holistic land management practices that provide food along with ecological and economic benefits.
The Horn Farm Center connects soil, food, and people in ways that improve the health and resilience of our community.
Community Education: The Horn Farm Center offers classes and workshops year round on the following topics: Gardening/Farming, Cooking, Ecological Design, Foraging, Wilderness Skills.
Community Gardens: Over 100 20 x 20 foot plots are available to soil lovers and aspiring farmers for growing fresh, chemical-free food in the company of other enthusiastic and dedicated gardeners.
Incubator Farm Project: This project provides land, infrastructure, marketing resources, and farm business training for new farm businesses.
Regenerative Farming Internship: This program is designed for those interested in exploring a future in small-scale vegetable production as well as anyone interested in learning growing skills for the purpose of homesteading, gardening, and feeding themselves and their community.
Beekeeper Training: Through the course of this two year program, participants work side by side with experienced beekeepers to learn all aspects of keeping bees.
Woodland Steward Training: This program provides foundational knowledge and practical skills for those interested in learning how to manage wooded and semi-wild areas in ways that can meet human needs, improve biodiversity, restore woodland health, and regenerate degraded landscapes.