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How to be an organic farmer

Organic farming is based on a sophisticated knowledge of entomology, soil science, botany, energy flows and the complex rotations of animals.

 How to be an organic farmer

So, you're thinking of being an organic farmer…

Becoming a successful organic farmer doesn't happen overnight. The conversion to Certified 'A' Grade organic generally takes about three years, so it requires commitment, training and knowledge. Full organic certification also means you'll have access to all the organic markets. You'll need to develop a farm plan.

Over the last couple of decades, the organic movement has been increasing in popularity.

Formal qualifications

Your journey towards being an organic farmer will require you to get your hands dirty, both figuratively and literally. TAFE NSW courses are designed to meet the needs of owners and managers of organic farming enterprises. Qualifications reflect the role of personnel working within an organic farming enterprise who manage standards and develop and maintain organic supply chains. It's suitable for people currently working or who wish to find employment on an organic farming enterprise.

As well as learning how to grow and harvest organic produce, it's also about successfully marketing that product to provide income. In other words, it's learning about both farming practices and marketing strategies. And starting literally from the ground up requires a certain amount of patience, as it usually takes a couple of cycles before the new system kicks in and yields start to increase.

Innovative courses can be studied at TAFE NSW National Environment Centre and throughout TAFE NS locations.

There's still a fairly widespread tendency in our society to view organic farming with a sceptical, almost nostalgic eye. As if it's a quaint relic from the past with no real future as an alternative to the industrial farming behemoth. But organic farming is based on a sophisticated knowledge of entomology, soil science, botany, energy flows and the complex rotations of animals. The kind of knowledge that has only recently become available. There's little doubt, then, that the wisdom and sustainability of organic farming firmly positions it as the farm, not of the past, but of the future.

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