New Seed Internship Program Announced!Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) and the Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture (MESA) recently launched a new Seed Internship Program -- the first of its kind in the U.S. The program matches individuals who want to learn about seed production with experienced growers. The six-month farm trainings combine hands-on education, farm-based independent study, and classroom and online learning.
Will you help us train more seed producers by sharing this announcement with your farming members, colleagues, and friends?The website features applications for prospective interns and host farms, and makes it easy for interns to search participating farms by location, crops, and other farm details.
The goal of the program is to grow a network of seed farms that provide interns real-world experience in seed production, business planning, and other skills. The program emphasizes training in organic seed production given ongoing gaps in the supply. Organic seed production is a potentially lucrative opportunity for farmers, yet the specialized skill set required to grow high-quality organic seed serves as a barrier to entry for many farmers.
Sales of organic products in the U.S. have grown tremendously, including sales of organic seed. Planting organic seed is a requirement of the national organic standards; however, certified organic farmers are allowed to use untreated, non-organic seed when availability is limited because the organic seed supply hasn't caught up to meet demand.
While demand for organic seed is high, there aren't enough trained organic seed farmers to help seed companies fulfill their supply needs. The Seed Internship Program is one effort to address this lack of training.
As part of this program, OSA will provide a webinar series for participating interns and seed production training curriculum for participating farms to provide structure to the internships.
Thank you for helping us get the word out to prospective interns and host farms!