The Massachusetts chapter of the Northeast Organic Farming Association. NOFA/Mass welcomes everyone who cares about food, where it comes from and how it’s grown

Growing Organically Since 1982

Join NOFA/Mass

Membership is not just for farmers.

 

Homesteaders

"Homesteading is a way for me to fully LIVE the life I love; a joyful immersion in a whole, sustainable system."

- Sharon Gensler
Outreach Coordinator, NOFA/Mass and long-time homesteader

In a world that is becoming increasingly more complex and inaccessible, people are taking charge of their own lives through homesteading. Homesteading represents the utmost expression of self sufficiency and self determination, and is practiced by New Englanders in a wide range of surroundings. Homesteaders across MA are raising chickens and livestock, keeping honeybee hives, planting vegetables and fruit trees, and finding ways of preserving, fermenting, and drying food to keep throughout the year. They are spinning their own fiber, constructing their own homes and furniture, implementing new forms of sustainable energy solutions and finding ways to renew, re-use and recycle natural resources.

At NOFA/Mass, we believe that opting out of an industrial food system by growing food for yourself and for your family is amongst one of the most empowering decisions a person can make; an act which is simultaneously a strong contribution to food security. Our homesteaders are bold dreamers. They step out of societal norms and create intentional communities, where simplicity, self-reliance, and hard work are core values. This is true whether they live on 20 acres of land or in urban apartments. Whether you are a homesteader because you’re not quite ready for the next smartphone, or because you are trying to make a political statement, our classes on cheese-making, lactofermentation, and other DIY workshops are designed for the homesteader or serious hobbyist. At NOFA/Mass you’ll also find a strong homesteading culture among our members – among folks who have been homesteading since the 70’s. If you’re a homesteader, come learn from the generations of MA residents who have successfully transitioned back to a simpler, land-based lifestyle.

Events Of Interest

December 10, 2016 - 10:00am to December 11, 2016 - 3:00pm

Ever wondered how you can make your own traditional prosciutto? Or sausage? Or maple-smoked bacon using local heritage pork raised on pasture?

This class, taught by Jake Levin, the “Roving Butcher”, will take you step-by-step from a live pig that was raised organically by Red Shirt Farm all the way to the delicious brined, smoked, cured, and stuffed end products that many know and love. Along the way, you’ll learn how to properly and humanely dispatch, break down, and butcher a whole animal and how to use all of those odd bits to make amazing value-added products that will impress your friends and family. You’ll also get to sample some delicious pork products made by Jake throughout the class.

January 14, 2017 (All day)
Go deeper into your winter study sessions at the upcoming NOFA/Mass Winter Conference at Worcester State University on January 14th, 2017! Our full program of adult, teen and children’s courses will be just what you need to prepare for your next growing cycle!

This year’s keynote speaker will be Paul Kaiser from Singing Frogs Farm in Sonoma County, CA.  Paul and his wife Elizabeth have been successfully demonstrating how to produce high volume, high quality vegetables in an inspiring no-till system since 2007.