Farmers of Humboldt County are invited to attend a virtual panel where we will explore the "state of our industry" in 2021. Hear from a select panel of experienced and upcoming Humboldt farmers who will consider the many complex challenges we face with Covid-19 while keeping our eye on local impacts of climate change and our ever-changing economy. Together we will develop a more diverse understanding of the health of our food system and gain insights into lucrative business pivots as we all move forward into 2021. A Q&A will follow the panel discussion.
This panel marks the beginning of an exciting season-long series of workshops put on in collaboration between North Coast SBDC and the North Coast Growers' Association. Information about the upcoming series will be provided.
Farmers interested in participating in any workshops in the upcoming May - October series are strongly encouraged to attend this panel and info session.
This panel will be moderated by:
Melanie Cunningham, Regenerative Farmer at Shakefork Community Farm
Melanie has been farming in Humboldt County since her arrival in 2005, after two years of traveling and farming in Hawaii, India, and Thailand. She & her husband, Kevin, started Shakefork Community Farm in 2008, where Melanie manages their year round vegetable production, a 165 member seasonal CSA, pastured poultry production and the farm finances.
Melanie holds an AS in Environmental Horticulture from City College of San Francisco and a BA in Religious Studies from Humboldt State; her studies in both areas have enriched and supported her farming. She discovered her affinity for growing things and physical work as a landscape gardener in San Francisco, starting a business that continues to flourish today. Melanie farms to feed her passion for good food as medicine and to grow her connection to place. Her favorite tool on the farm is Quickbooks and her favorite crop to grow is spinach... or maybe onions... no wait bell peppers!! Actually, it's the diversity of production at Shakefork that really makes her heart sing.
Melanie currently serves as the Board President for the NCGA (North Coast Growers' Association), Board member for ERWIG (Eel River Watershed Improvement Group), and advisor to the NRLT (Northcoast Regional Land Trust).
Ivy North, Director of Programs for the North Coast Growers’ Association
Ivy has been working for non-profit organizations within the Humboldt County food system for over a decade. Over the years she has worked for Food for People as the coordinator for the Eureka food pantry and previously served on the board for the North Coast Co-op, the California Small Farms Conference and the Humboldt Permaculture Guild. Ivy has been an active voting member of the Humboldt Food Policy Council for about 5 years. She is an HSU alumni and is a certified Permaculture Designer and Small Farm Master Gardener.
As the Director of Programs for NCGA, Ivy oversees a number of programs and grants that focus on farmers’ market food access and equity, provides food systems education for youth, and organizes various resources and trainings for farmers.