Organic Intensives 2018

Organic Intensives 2018

We invite you to join us on Saturday, January 6th, 2018 for a one-day in-depth learning experience. Organic Intensives are an opportunity to acquire practical, detailed information over the course of a day with fellow Michigan farmers and gardeners.

For 2018 we are working with individuals who are recognized experts and educators in one of three topic areas:

Diverse Grain Options for Farms and Homesteads

Local and organic grains, particularly from heritage seed sources, are gaining in popularity. Reasons include diversifying crop rotations and farm income, improving local diets and food security, developing local seed sources of non-gmo seeds, and supporting Michigan’s craft beer industry. Crops include oats, barley, wheat, spelt, sorghum and even rice. We are bringing together small grain seed provider John Sherck, along with Michigan farmers and researchers, with the intention of growing this important movement. Information will be provided for both small plot homestead production for family use and farm scale production for local marketing. For more information, take a look at the flyer.


photo of basil starts

Organic Transplant Production: Secure a Stellar Season with Successful Starts

To get the desired vegetable, flower and herb varieties at the times needed and raised with organic methods, most farmers and gardeners need to start their own transplants. This workshop will include information on making important decisions about ordering seeds, making or selecting root media and growing containers, water and fertility management, using indoor lighting systems and greenhouses, selecting temperatures, and managing pests and diseases. Growing microgreens and how to market both microgreens and transplants throughout the year as an additional income stream will also be covered.  MSU Professor and MOFFA Chair John Biernbaum will be joined by Collin Thompson, manager of the North Farm at the Upper Peninsula Research and Extension Center.  Participants will have access to online course materials and presentations after the OI session.  See the flyer for more information.


photo of cattle

Small to Medium Scale Livestock for the Integrated Farm

Integrating crops and livestock is a key opportunity for developing soil and farm health; as well as being another component of a diversified financially successful farm. But where do you start and how do you develop strategies that incorporate respect for animal health and welfare? Also how do you develop animal husbandry systems that truly help both the farm ecology and economics, and the quality of life of the farmers? Topics to be covered include animal nutrition/diets, humane care, and thoughtful integration into your existing farm operation, with recommendations from Jeff Mattocks, a nationally recognized livestock expert, along with three experienced Michigan livestock farmers. For more information, take a look at the flyer.

The event will take place on Saturday, January 6th, at the Plant and Soil Sciences building on the MSU campus in East Lansing.  More information about Organic Intensives 2018 is available on the brochure, but feel free to email us with any questions.

Registration is $90 for MOFFA members and $105 for non-members, and covers six hours of learning, lunch, two breaks, all printed materials, and a great chance to network with fellow farmers and gardeners from across Michigan.  Parking is free at the Plant and Soil Sciences Building.  A limited number of scholarships are available; to apply please email

Register Now!

We have reserved a block of rooms at the Candlewood Suites, 3545 Forest Road in East Lansing, for both Friday and Saturday nights.  The rooms are all suites, and are available to OI participants at $95 per night through December 18th; the block of rooms will be released then but the OI rate will still be available after that date if rooms are available.  To make a reservation, you will need to enter your arrival and departure dates and MOF in the Group Code box, then click “check availability” to see the special OI rate.

Please help us publicize the event by downloading the brochure or the flyer and distributing them in your community.  If you'd like us to send you pre-printed brochures or flyers, please let us know.

Organic Intensives would not be possible without the sponsorship of companies and foundations who support our work. If you are interested in sponsoring Organic Intensives and our other activities, please see the Sponsorship page.

Bay Shore Sales North Central SARE Herbruck's logoBlue River Organic Seed Everbest Organics SunOpta logo Center for Regional Food Systems GreenStone Farm Credit Services Crop Services InernationalGrowth Products logo Grice Farms and Feedmill Fertrell logo USDA Natural Resources Conservation ServiceOrganic Valley