Seed What Happens
Matching the organic seed growers of tomorrow with the experienced seed growers of today
Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) works to support aspiring seed growers in many ways. Through generous support from the USDA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program and through our partnership with the Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture (MESA), we offer the following programs for beginning seed growers.
Seed Internship Program
OSA’s Seed Internship Program connects individuals who want to learn about seed production with experienced growers looking to hire interns. Prospective hosts and interns use our online matching platform to find each other. The terms of the internship are particular to each host and intern pair. OSA offers support as needed (guidance for farmers, promotion of intern positions, and options for online seed education resources to compliment the on-farm experience). OSA also provides periodic check-ins with hosts and interns and additional support as needed throughout the season.
Please note that the definition of intern is quite flexible here, but generally refers to a person with little to moderate farming experience who is looking to grow their skills in seed production by working on a seed farm.
Organic Seed Production Online Course- COMING 2021
Any beginning producer working on a seed farm is invited to enroll in our Organic Seed Production Online Course, beginning in 2021. Watch for registration announcement early 2021 as registration will be limited to ensure course quality. This interactive, cohort-based course is designed to supplement an on-farm seed production training experience. The course includes six modules over six months, and is focused on the biological, technical and economic aspects of organic seed production. A link to the course description page will be available soon.
Self-Guided Tutorial in Organic Seed Production
The Self-Guided Tutorial in Organic Seed Production was developed in 2016-2017 by OSA and MESA and was designed to supplement an on-farm seed production training experience. Tutorial users move through the topics at their own pace and are encouraged to connect with other growers and OSA staff independently via the Farmer Campus platform. The flow of topics and available resources in the Self-Guided Tutorial are similar to those on the Online Course, but the Course is delivered by a team of instructors over a specific time frame and features regular opportunities for live interaction and shared learning among course participants.
All resources developed though these programs, as well as a wealth of information from other beginning farmer programs, are available at FarmAnswers.org. FarmAnswers.com is the USDA’s clearinghouse for projects and resources targeting beginning farmers.