Cultivating Maine’s Agricultural Future: A Five-Part Policy & Planning Webinar Series for Towns

Cultivating Maine’s Agricultural Future: A Five-Part Policy & Planning Webinar Series for Towns

March 25, 2024

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Following the recent publication of Cultivating Maine’s Agricultural Future: A Policy and Planning Guide for Towns (Second Edition), Maine Farmland Trust is offering a free five-part webinar series for municipal officials, local advocates and other interested stakeholders across Maine to learn more about what town governments can do to support local agriculture.

Municipalities have an important role to play in protecting important farmland from being lost to development, helping farm businesses thrive, and ensuring that local ordinances and planning initiatives respond to the diverse needs and goals of farmers in their communities. There is much that can be done locally to advance farm-friendly policy and planning solutions, often by town boards or committees, but also by individuals who care about agriculture and recognize opportunities for change or action in their communities.

This five-part webinar series will explore the range of tools and strategies that are available to municipalities to support farm businesses and protect and promote access to farmland. Each webinar will include a presentation by Maine Farmland Trust on relevant areas of the updated municipal guide followed by a discussion and Q&A with 2-3 panelists who have first hand experience utilizing farm-friendly municipal tools and strategies. The webinars, hosted through Zoom, are as follows:

Registration is free. It is not necessary to register for each webinar, but attendees will need to register separately for each webinar they are interested in attending.

Building the Case for Why Towns Should Support Local Agriculture

When: April 5th, 1pm – 2pm

Watch the recording here.

Gathering Information on Local Agriculture and Engaging Farmers in Municipal Government

When: April 11th, 10am –11am

Watch the recording here.

Prioritizing Agriculture in Municipal Planning Initiatives

When: April 18th, 1pm – 2pm

Watch the recording here.

Municipal Strategies for Protecting & Promoting Access to Farmland

When: April 24th, 10am – 11:15am

Register here.

Municipal Strategies for Supporting Viable and Resilient Farms

When: May 2nd, 1pm – 2:15pm

Register here.

Each session will build off the last, but will also make sense and be useful independently – so feel free to register and attend all five, skip around as topics interest you, or just drop in for one as your schedule allows! Additional descriptions and information about each session and featured panelists can be found on our events page.

The Second Edition of Cultivating Maine’s Agricultural Future was produced by Maine Farmland Trust in collaboration with the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, and is the result of insights and contributions from numerous town officials, farmers, partner organizations, and other municipal and agricultural stakeholders across the state and region.

More information and a link to download the guide can be found here.

Special thanks to Farm Credit Northeast Ag. Enhancement for supporting us in developing and sharing the guide!

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