Learn with Us in the New Year, from Farm Business Planning to Production Strategies

The online course season is almost halfway through, and now’s the time to register for our upcoming block three courses which begin in the new year. This block of courses includes our new course on goats, plus farm business courses and production courses covering beekeeping, mushrooms, sheep and more.

Our suite of online courses is offered on a user-friendly platform, which grants registrants permanent access to their course content. Also, courses have tiered pricing based on household size and income to make access to the courses more affordable and equitable for everyone.

Registration is now open for all courses, with live content starting at the end of October for our second block of courses:

Access to Capital

Mondays: January 9 – February 13, 2023

It can be very difficult to navigate the process of getting grants or loans, especially if you did not come to farming with a background in finance. This new course will cover the various aspects of seeking funding for a farm enterprise.

Cómo Iniciar su Negocio Agrícola

Jueves: 12 de Enero hasta el 16 de Febrero del 2023

Con este nuevo curso usted podrá aprender en su propio idioma y con la Comunidad Latina sobre cómo iniciar un negocio agrícola. aprender de las experiencias de mujeres y hombres Latinos que ya tiene su negocio agrícola establecido en diferentes Estados y que aman hacer agricultura, encontrando en esta el estilo de vida que responde a sus valores, metas, habilidad y recursos.

Exploring Markets and Profits

Thursdays: January 12 – February 16, 2023

Have an idea for a farm enterprise but not sure if it’s feasible? This course will help you explore the potential markets and profitability of your ideas, picking up where BF 101: Starting at Square One (not a prerequisite) left off.

Goat Production

Wednesdays: January 11 – February 15, 2023

This new course will guide beginning farmers through the production and marketing of goats for dairy, meat, and fiber. Goats can function as a profitable stand-alone enterprise or can be integrated into your existing farm structure to provide a variety of products and make use of marginal lands that would otherwise go unused.

Holistic Financial Planning

Tuesdays: January 10 – February 14, 2023

If you’ve been struggling to make your farm operation profitable without driving yourself into the ground, this financial planning course is for you. You will learn how to make financial decisions toward farm and family values and goals.

​Indoor Specialty Mushroom Production​

Tuesdays: January 10 – February 14, 2023

Mushrooms are an emerging niche crop and can easily be grown. This course trains new and experienced farmers in the background, techniques, marketing and economics of farm-scale indoor commercial production.

Introduction to Beekeeping

Tuesdays: January 10 – February 28, 2023

Whether you are currently keeping honey bees or are considering them for your farm, a basic knowledge of bee biology, diseases, pests, and setting up your colony are essential for success. This 8-week course will give you real-world experiences paired with academic concepts.

Season Extension with High Tunnels

Tuesdays: January 10 – February 14, 2023

Adding weeks to your growing season can mean attaining a premium for having products available well before (or long after) other local growers. This course will introduce you to unheated plastic-covered “high tunnels,” covering cost, management and more.

Sheep Production

Thursdays: January 12 – February 16, 2023

Have sheep or thinking about getting a flock? Producers of all experience levels will find something for them in this lively, wide-ranging course. There is no one right way to raise sheep — this course covers many of these different options.

Vegetable Production II

Wednesdays: January 11 – February 15, 2022

This course continues where BF 120: Vegetable Production I (not a prerequisite) ends, covering vegetable production from transplanting to harvest, including: in-season fertility, integrated pest management, weed control, harvesting, and marketing.

Our program offers more than two dozen online courses to help farmers improve their technical and business skills. These courses cover a range of topics any farmer needs to succeed, such as farm business and taxes, grazing management, tree fruit production, and so much more. Experienced farmers and extension educators guide students through course content, including weekly live webinars, videos, and resources.

New additions to our online course suite include “Goat Production,” which will guide beginning farmers through the production and marketing of goats for dairy, meat and fiber. Also, we’ve added “Identification and Use of Mushrooms in Farms, Gardens, and Forests” to teach you basic ID, species, life cycle, and potential applications of mushrooms to solve community-level challenges.

In recent years we’ve also added: “Access to Capital” for anyone seeking funding for a farm enterprise; “Cut Flower Production” on the business of flower farming; a course on “Beef Cattle Management;” a primer on “Social Media & Online Marketing” for your farm business; and a 4-week intensive in how “Reading the Land” can help you monitor its health.

The bulk of the course happens on your own time, with discussions, readings, and assignments in Teachable, our online course platform. To add to the experience, webinars will be woven into the interface of the course for a dedicated time slot each year to allow you to meet on a weekly basis to learn from presenters and ask questions in real-time. If you miss one, they are always recorded and posted for later viewing.

You can browse all of our course offerings on our website. You can learn more about our courses, including answers to common questions, on our course FAQ.

Kacey Deamer

Kacey is the Communications Manager for the Cornell Small Farms Program. In this role, she manages all storytelling and outreach across the program’s website, social media, e-newsletter, magazine and more. Kacey has worked in communications and journalism for more than a decade, with a primary focus on science and sustainability.
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