Welcome to the NOFA/Mass newsletter series

Each week we publish original articles on the topics we care about most.

Read about the latest policy issues affecting Massachusetts farmers and consumers in our “Policy and Advocacy” newsletter, get insider farming and gardening tips from expert growers in our “Be a Better Grower” newsletter, learn to do it yourself, from food preservation to building fences, in our “Practical Self-Sufficiency” newsletter and see how our community is working to improve the food system in our “Food Justice” newsletter.

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2022 November

How to Minimize Irrigation Even in the Hottest of Summers

November 9th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Christine R. Nelson, NOFA/Mass Intern Photo credit: Many Hands Organic Farm The height of the 2022 growing season will be remembered for the undesirable combination of heat and drought, with all areas [...]

Vote Climate, Vote Justice

November 3rd, 2022|Categories: Action Alert, Newsletters|Tags: , , |

By Marty Dagoberto, NOFA/Mass Policy Director The following is an excerpt from our 2022 NOFA/Mass Climate Action Challenge educational content which is especially relevant as we approach election and voting day next week. To read [...]

2022 October

Bringing Together Farming Knowledge From Around the World with All Farmers

October 27th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Anna Gilbert-Muhammad, NOFA/Mass Food Access Director Farmers learn to assess the health of their soil using a variety of observation techniques. All Farmers, an organization that supports refugee and immigrant farmers [...]

Growing Vegetables in a Perennial Clover Living Mulch: Part 2

October 12th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

Sawyer Farm's Tillage Reduction Journey By Lincoln Fishman, Farmer at Sawyer Farm Lincoln Fishman headed to the fields. Photo credit: Akos Szilvasi. In the spring of 2020, we decided to do a small [...]

The Future of Solar in Massachusetts

October 7th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

Policy Update October 2022 Farmers (and everyone): please weigh in on the future of solar in Massachusetts, letter to the next Governor Marty Dagoberto, NOFA/Mass Policy Director Hopefully everyone reading this is aware that we [...]

2022 September

Growing Vegetables in a Perennial Clover Living Mulch: Part 1

September 29th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

Sawyer Farm's Tillage Reduction Journey By Lincoln Fishman, Farmer at Sawyer Farm Lincoln Fishman at Sawyer Farm. Photo credit: Akos Szilvasi. Sawyer Farm is located in the Hilltowns of Western Massachusetts. We've [...]

Soil Health and Herbal Medicine at Tapley Garden

September 22nd, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

By Sis. Anna Muhammad, NOFA/Mass Food Access Director Left to right: Ruben Parrilla, Agnes Frias, Sis. Dora Miller, Sis. Anna Gilbert-Muhammad at Soil Health Day at Tapley Garden, August 30, 2022. In August [...]

Kombucha Brewing Part III: The Second Fermentation

September 16th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Ophelia Jackson, NOFA/Mass Intern Ingredients, left to right: ginger/kombucha puree, raspberry hibiscus preserves, spicy honey, Tazo lemon strawberry tea, Celestial Peppermint and Raspberry Zinger teas. Photo credit: Ophelia Jackson At once [...]

2022 August

Kombucha Brewing Part II: The First Fermentation

August 18th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Ophelia Jackson, NOFA/Mass Intern To the uninitiated, a SCOBY can certainly look a little strange—unappetizing, alien, grotesque even, belonging more in a Hogwarts classroom than their own home kitchen. Despite its appearance, though, [...]

2022 July

Microbes, Microscopes, Soil Health and Food Access

July 29th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

Youth Agricultural Scientists Bridge Soil Science with Food Security John Duke speaks to a crowd of youth agricultural scientists in Springfield, MA in July, 2022. By Anna Gilbert-Muhammad, NOFA/Mass Food Access Director [...]

3 weeks left to prioritize living landscapes and food justice: Call your Legislators!

July 7th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

By Marty Dagoberto, NOFA/Mass Policy Director Watch a personal video message from Policy Director Marty Dagoberto regarding this month's policy newsletter article. Dear NOFA/Mass friends, It’s been quite a summer/year/decade so [...]

2022 June

Cooking With Mari: Making Sofrito with Tapley Court Apartments Resident Chef

June 30th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Sister Anna Gilbert-Muhammad, NOFA/Mass Food Access Director The Summer season for the Youth Agricultural Scientists at Tapley Garden started with a cooking demonstration from local chef Marylis. Marylis is a resident of the [...]

Practical Nitrogen Management on the Vegetable Farm

June 8th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Noah Courser-Kellerman, Farmer at Alprilla Farm First published in the July 2019 edition of the NOFA/Mass newsletter. Reprinted with the author's permission June 2022. Roller crimper, then coulter with an old fertilizer [...]

Promoting Racial Equity in Agriculture Through Policy

June 1st, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

By Nichole Catsos From the land theft and genocide of Indigenous peoples, through the enslavement of Black people, to the current labor exploitation of migrant workers in the United States, our food system has [...]

2022 May

Reflections on the Recent Tragedy in Buffalo, NY

May 27th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

NOFA/Mass stands in solidarity with the families of the people affected by the recent hate crimes. We also recognize and support the work of the front line organizers holding their communities and experiencing the [...]

2022 April

Working with Stinging Nettles and Wild Violets

April 29th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

Kitchen Medicine with the Youth Leaders of Home City Housing, Part 2 By Anna Gilbert-Muhammad, NOFA/Mass Food Access Director Youth wild harvesting nettle and wild violets in Springfield, MA, April 2022. Nathalie [...]

Budget Season! Help Shape the Future of our Food System

April 6th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

Briefing for food system advocates on April 11, 2022 The state legislature has been focused on the state’s operating budget (FY23) and the House Ways and Means Committee is expected to release its version [...]

2022 March

Caring for Your Soil: Understanding Soil Aggregation and Compaction

March 16th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Christine Manuck, NOFA/Mass Soil Health Projects Manager Ruben Parilla, NOFA/Mass Soil Tech Coordinator, evaluating soil aggregation at Assawaga Farm (CT). Photo credit: Monique Bosch I’m frequently telling my kids, “you get what [...]

Will our Commonwealth support protections against Chemical Trespass?

March 10th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Marty Dagoberto, NOFA/Mass Policy Director Last month, we reported with excitement and gratitude that the state’s legislative committee on the Environment and Agriculture approved several pesticide reform measures. We’d like to focus this [...]

2022 February

February Policy Newsletter – Priority bills advance, Healthy Soils as Infrastructure, and more

February 9th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Marty Dagoberto, NOFA/Mass Policy Director In this month’s NOFA/Mass Policy Newsletter… NOFA/Mass Priority Bills Advance from Committee! Several pieces of NOFA/Mass priority legislation were advanced in the Massachusetts Legislature ahead of the February [...]

Book Review: Urban Ecosystem Justice by Scott Kellogg

February 24th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Mike Rice, NOFA/Mass Development Director.  A decade ago Mike interned with the Radix Center, where he first met Scott Kellogg and spent many mornings hauling food scraps for Radix’s Community Compost Initiative in [...]

2022 January

Herbs for Seasonal Affective Disorder

January 19th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

St. Johnswort flowers. Photo credit: Hannah Jacobson-Hardy By Hannah Jacobson-Hardy, Herbalist at Sweet Birch Herbals *Reprinted with permission from The winter is long in New England and many people suffer from [...]

The Misnomer of the Commons: The History of Common Land in the Commonwealth

January 27th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , |

By Grayce Rose, recent graduate of the Farm and Food Systems program at Greenfield Community College and NOFA/Mass Intern. Amidst the modern functions of life in present day Massachusetts, there are symbolic structural and [...]

Strategies for Increasing Production Resiliency

January 12th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , |

Winter Conference Workshops for Growers By Christine Manuck, NOFA/Mass Soil Health Projects Manager Given the increased frequency of climate-related severe weather events and pandemic-related food chain and supply issues, we believe the need for [...]

The Farmer’s Voice in the Climate Crisis

January 5th, 2022|Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , , , |

How Climate Challenges Expose the Need for Regenerative Agricultural Practices By Kathleen Ernsting, Farmer and NOFA/Mass Journalism Intern It goes without saying that agriculture in the Northeast is being affected by climate change, and Massachusetts [...]

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