Community Alliance with Family Farmers Upcoming Events

I’ve been corresponding with @ElizabethVaughan from Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF), and CAFF has several amazing upcoming events that Western GOATS can get involved in. I know I’m interested! Tagging active Western folks who I think may be interested in this thread - @AmberS @laurieWayne @paul121 @jtwood @anna @kylebirchard @samuejao

Here is a run down of what CAFF has going on. Text is directly from Elizabeth with some light editing and feedback responses from me.

  1. November 8th is CAFF’s small farm production tools demo day in Parlier, CA (near Fresno). CAFF will have 10 tools that they’ll be highlighting. They will have a few resource tables during the event that GOAT folks could participate in (registration link). This is a “mini” demo day to help launch the larger annual Small Farm Tech Expo being hosted every Spring. Their goal is to have at least 120 farmers attend this event. Note that CAFF is expecting a fraction of the farmers to be monolingual Spanish, Hmong, and Punjabi speakers.

    • Do we have any GOATS that can support this event? If you speak Spanish that is definitely an added bonus. If anyone wants to fly into Oakland, I can pick up and drive to the event. I would just need at least one other person to support the effort.
    • @ElizabethVaughan What is the cost to participate? Are there registration or expo fees?
  2. November 8th is CAFF’s scheduled launch date for a needs assessment they are conducting on appropriate small farm tech for the San Joaquin Valley. They are looking for a researcher contractor for this work. If you’re interested in this work, check out the RFP.

  3. a. The Small Farm Innovation Challenge is live through November 15th! Any GOATS who are building open source software and hardware can apply to participate.

    b. Conference session RFPs are open until Oct 1st for the Small Farms Conference (Conference is Sun. Feb 25 - Wed. Feb 28 online with small in person events). Elizabeth suggested that GOAT folks might submit a proposal on “what is open source ag technology & meet GOAT!”. They had over 1000 folks register last year!

    • I’m definitely interested in submitting an RFP for GOAT, and I imagine it could be a follow up to a presentation several of us did for The Organic Center a few years back. Is anyone interested in co-presenting if I submit a proposal? There are in person and online presentation options.
    • Tagging folks who may be interested in supporting a virtual event but may not otherwise pay attention to this thread because they aren’t located in the west: @sudokita @gbathree @jgaehring @mstenta @chrowe @vicsf @nat
  4. CAFF’s Small Farm Tech Expo - annual event to take place following the Small Farms Conference in Fresno in late Feb or early March (they are still securing a venue and hope to have a date soon). CAFF definitely wants GOAT and the open-source tools highlighted at this event. They are planning to also feature several workshops, panels, speakers, etc. Their goal is to have this Expo be the counter to the World Ag Expo in Tulare and to give small farms more access to best-fit tools for their business and operations. While their mini expo will focus on production technology, the annual Expo will feature all aspects of farm technology. For this event, Elizabeth built in a budget for GOAT folks to attend and for this to serve as a Western GOAT mini-conference.


:heart: :goat: :dancer:


Wow, lots of amazing opportunities! I am happy to support and participate where I can!


Hey everyone! Yeah, I’m excited!

Paul shared an idea during the morning call and Anika and Greg shared some thoughts as well that I wanted to follow up on. I’ve never participated in hackathons or in tech development within the open-source community so I could use some more guidance and direction! Is there an example case that I could learn from to better understand how the process flows with working directly on a project with a farmer? For example, I’m trying to better understand how GOAT community could support tool developers who are targeting small farmers, e.g. the FarmHand Tractor (

The proposed path forward that I shared included the following. Let me know what everyone thinks!

  • Introductory gathering/get our feet wet - Anyone who is available can attend the Nov 8th demo day to table on GOAT tools, meet farmers, and other partners working in this space.
  • [Dec/Jan] E.Vaughan shares Small Farm Innovation Challenge submissions that could maybe be a fit for a GOAT collaboration? e.g. a farmer submits a conceptual idea and is interested in bringing the idea to life & working with others.
  • [late feb/early march] GOAT Western Gathering at Small Farm Tech Expo - GOAT & any tool companies to table, maybe participate in panel, etc. Side room hackathon that takes place? Or a meeting room is set aside for GOAT partners to meet with Innovation Challenge projects?

I’d also love to learn more about the research that Anika conducted with the 16 interviews they did in CA. How can we best tap into her existing knowledge and build off of it?


1 Like

Hi folks,

An update regarding CAFF’s small farm production tools demo day in Parlier, CA on November 8th. @paul121 and @julietnpn (thats me) will be attending thanks to the financial contributions of farmOS + axilab@Purdue. We will be demoing the following tools:

  • farmOS
  • LandPKS
  • LiteFarm
  • SurveyStack
  • SoilStack
  • Open Food Network
  • Hylo
  • PSA Cover Crop Selector Tool

If your tool isn’t on this list and you want us to demo it OR pass along fliers, please reach out to @julietnpn or respond here.