Willie Nelson and others to host events focusing on farmers

Farm Aid president Willie Nelson, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition and farmer-entrepreneurs will host a series of events beginning June 2 to highlight the critical role small and mid-sized farms play in building a stronger American economy.  These groups are working in concert to provide President Barack Obama, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and members of Congress with the evidence and strategies necessary to transform U.S. agriculture into a system that fosters innovation and economic growth. 

On June 2, the eve of the USDA National Rural Summit in Hillsboro, Mo., Farm Aid will release its new report, “Rebuilding America’s Economy with Family Farm-Centered Food Systems,” during a briefing teleconference. The report provides substantive evidence to support Farm Aid’s ongoing call to the nation’s leadership in Washington to recognize the potential family farmers have to revive the U.S. economy. 

What:     Farm Aid Briefing Teleconference: Rebuilding America’s Economy with Family Farm-Centered Food Systems 

Who:     Willie Nelson, president, Farm Aid
                  Alicia Harvey, program manager, Farm Aid
                  Fred Kirschenmann, organic farmer and distinguished
                   fellow, The Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at
                  Iowa State University
                  Ferd Hoefner, policy director, NSAC
                  Karl Kuper, farmer for Shepherd’s Grain 

When:     Wednesday, June 2, 1 p.m. EDT 

How:      To participate in the teleconference RSVP to Maria Enie at menie@vancomm.com by June 1. 

On June 8, NSAC, Farm Aid, Organic Valley, and the Heifer International U.S. Country Program will host a panel of producer-entrepreneurs to speak before the Senate Agriculture Committee.  The panel, “Agriculture of the Middle: New Strategies to Support America’s Mid-Sized Family Farmers,” will outline innovative business models that, with appropriate legislative support, can offer solutions to the crisis that threatens to push many mid-sized farmers and ranchers off their land.  For more information about the panel, please visit http://sustainableagriculture.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/AOTM_briefinginvitation_June8.pdf or contact Jess Daniel at (202) 547-5754 or

About Farm Aid

For 25 years, Farm Aid has worked to build a vibrant, family farm-centered system of agriculture in America. Farm Aid artists and board members Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave Matthews host an annual concert to raise funds to support Farm Aid’s work with family farmers and to inspire people to choose family farmed food. Since 1985, Farm Aid has raised more than $36 million to support programs that help farmers thrive, expand the reach of the Good Food Movement, take action to change the dominant system of industrial agriculture and promote food from family farms. For updates about “Farm Aid 25: Growing Hope for America,” visit www.farmaid.org and follow Farm Aid at www.twitter.com/farmaid.

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