This fall, ASAN will begin a state-wide farmer needs assessment (FNA) of fifty sustainable producers and aspiring producers in Alabama, and we need your help to make it possible! During the fall and winter, our Farmer Support Coordinator Charlotte, along with three FNA Fellows, will visit producers on their farms and hold two-hour interviews with them. This assessment is being done by our network for our network, to create opportunities for relationship-building and resource-sharing across our network. Your participation is crucial to making this happen, and we are so excited to be launching it soon!

If you choose to participate, the interview will be a time where you can share about your farm, your personal history, the history of the land you farm, and your visions for the future of our agricultural system. Though we know this is a lot to cover in just two hours, the hope is that it can be a conversational, informal time to hear more about you and how you are connected, or not yet connected, to ASAN and to other producers in your area.  This is not your typical assessment, or survey. We will be focusing on much more than simple data and numbers.  The questions are centered around ASAN’s beliefs that a resilient agricultural system is ecologically regenerative, centered around those who work the land, just, intergenerational, and rooted in community.

The overall goal of the FNA is to gain a more textured understanding of what your goals and visions are as a producer, what your operations currently look like, and the challenges you experience. Then, with wide participation from ASAN’s community of producers, we will be able to see ripples and common themes that are upheld across the interviews. This assessment, conducted with a focus on relationship building, will enable ASAN to grow as a network and better support farmers through ASAN programs, structure, and resources.

After the assessment is complete, these common themes and findings will be brought to the network in order to inform our programming, resources, and opportunities for relationship-building for producers — in short, the FNA will help ASAN to better serve you and farmers like you throughout the state.

The information you share with us will be kept confidential and anonymous; information will not be shared without the consent of the participant. However, we will combine your information with that of other producers so that we can talk in general terms about the needs of producers and aspiring producers in Alabama.

These interviews will follow COVID-safe procedures, and participants will be paid a stipend of $50 for participating. We are looking for producers who are ASAN members and those who might not know of ASAN yet, to participate, so please spread the word near and far across Alabama!

To schedule an interview or learn more about the assessment, you can reach out to Charlotte at [email protected]. We hope you consider being a part of this important project!