Farmer Training

Courses & Workshops

The Ecological Farmers of Ontario (EFAO) has provided farmer to farmer training through workshops, field days, kitchen table meetings, and courses for 30 years. EFAO lists its offerings on the EFAO Events page.

 

Canadian Organic Growers have chapters throughout Ontario. COG offers webinars, workshops and is the host of Eastern Ontario’s organic conference, Eco Farm Day. COG National publishes organic handbooks, guides, and a monthly magazine. For the latest COG events and course listings, please visit COG Events.

Everdale Environmental Learning Centre has been training a new kind of local, ecological farmer since 1998. Whether you are starting to explore the world of sustainable local agriculture or are committed to establishing or restructuring a local farm business, there is something on the menu for you. To see a list of Everdale’s courses and workshops, visit their Farmer Training page.

Internships/ Apprenticeships

CRAFT Southwest Ontario is an informal, member-driven organization made up of more than a dozen southern Ontario organic farms. CRAFT southwest Ontario is your gateway to a farming internship experience that will equip you with the tools and insights to make a real difference in the sustainable agriculture. Learn more about available internships here.

Want to travel and work on an organic farm at the same time? World-Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) networks help place volunteers on organic farms. There are currently farms registered in over 99 countries world-wide. Click here for the WWOOF Canada site.

Stewards Of Irreplaceable Land (SOIL) links Canadian farmers willing to take on and train apprentices with folks wanting to work and learn on an organic farm using sustainable practices. They aim to create apprenticeships which transfer lasting knowledge to both farmers and apprentices. Learn more about their offerings here.

UBC Farm Practicum in Sustainable Agriculture is an eight-month experiential learning program designed for aspiring farmers, urban gardeners, environmental educators, and students with an interest in applying their learning about sustainable agriculture and food systems.

Everdale Organic Farm & Environmental Learning Centre offers a full-season Sustainable Farming Certificate program. It is primarily a hands-on field-based experience. It includes a series of one-day field trips and seminars on organic farming as well as a rich variety of other training opportunities.

For application details and more information please contact:

Wolf Chrapko, farm manager, at 519-855-4859 x106 or wolf.chrapko@everdale.org

University and College Programs

The University of Guelph offers a certificate in organic agriculture open to all students enrolled in an undergraduate program. Course topics include soils, animal and plant production, and society and sustainability.

Gaia College, located in Duncan, BC, offers online and classroom courses that deal with a number of organic topics,including landcare, horticulture, plant knowledge, and more.

Trent University offers BA and BSc degrees in Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems, with opportunities for hands-on experience through the Trent Centre for Community-Based Education.

Fleming College offers a Sustainable Agriculture Co-op program designed for new farmers looking for intensive, hands-on instruction in sustainable or natural farming.

McGill University offers an ecological agriculture specialization in their department of Agricultural and Environmental Studies, which can include courses on regulations, agriculture and international development, small-scale farming, community gardening, and more. Université Laval also offers a minor in organic agriculture.

Ryerson University’s Centre for Studies in Food Security offers a certificate in Food Security, with topics ranging from understanding urban agriculture to Indigenous food systems in Canada.

Additional Resources

Check out COG’s National Lending Library, which contains 1,300 books, DVDs, periodicals, and more on topics relating to organic agriculture. COG has also launched a comprehensive guide to the Canadian Organic Standards, to help organic stakeholders better understand and engage with our federal standards.

The Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) offers an up-to-date products list, which contains all the inputs verified for organic production and processing in Canada, and is updated every two weeks.