New Apprenticeships in Sustainable Farming
APPLICATIONS FOR 2018 ARE NOW CLOSED. Please check back October 1 for information about the 2019 Apprenticeship Program. If you want to be added to the email list to receive information when the applications are opened for the new year, please email email@example.com. Thank you for your interest!
Carnation Farms is excited to announce new Apprenticeships in Sustainable Farming. Under the mentorship of our Director of Sustainable Agriculture, apprentices will gain the educational background and hands-on experiences needed to be a successful farmer producing healthful, organic food for the Snoqualmie Valley area of Washington State and beyond.
The full-time program takes place at Carnation Farms’ historic 818-acre property in Carnation, Washington, where apprentices have the opportunity to live, rent-free, in shared on-site housing. On our 7-acre organic produce farm, apprentices will learn environmentally sound practices growing vegetables and other field crops. On other parts of the property, apprentices will learn livestock management (cattle, hogs, sheep, and poultry, including egg layers and meat birds), beekeeping, and salmon stream care. Other agricultural topics will include soil management, seed selection and ordering, propagation methods, weed and pest management, cultivation, harvest, crop rotation, cover-cropping, and storage. Apprentices will also learn marketing techniques, developing a business and strategic plan, basic accounting and record-keeping, time management, consumer interaction to generate sales, land acquisition, culinary preparations of farm products, regulations, food systems, public policy, and labor. Some topics will be taught by local experts either on-site or via local field trips. Operating and repairing typical farm vehicles, equipment, structures, and tools are part of the training, as well as implement purchase, cleaning, and storage.
Following the 7-month program, which runs April through November, apprentices will spend December and January developing and refining a business plan for their own small-scale farm (1/2 to 1 acre), as they continue working on the farm. If approved, the apprentice will receive the opportunity to farm through the end of 2019 at Carnation Farms, with the use of land, farm equipment, and shared housing provided rent-free. During that year, they will train new 2019 apprentices and will receive guidance and support from Carnation Farms staff.
Apprentices will work under the Director of Sustainable Agriculture and will be paid a bi-weekly stipend of $1000 (gross before taxes). Work will require availability on evenings and weekends as scheduled. In addition to classroom-style instruction and hands-on farming, apprentices will interact with Carnation Farms staff, and also with participants in Carnation Farms’ educational programming, such as farm camps, culinary classes, weekend farm days, markets and school field trips.
Carnation Farms expects that after the completion of the apprenticeship, graduates will establish their own commercial food-producing farms, preferably in the Snoqualmie Valley or Washington State.