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CT NOFA > TOPP (Transition to Organic Partnership Program)

TOPP (Transition to Organic Partnership Program)

TOPP IS A NETWORK OF ORGANIZATIONS PARTNERING TO SUPPORT TRANSITIONING AND EXISTING ORGANIC FARMERS

What is TOPP?

CT NOFA is proud to be a Core Partner in the Northeast Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP), a mentorship program that pairs experienced organic producers with producers who are transitioning to organic. This community agreement is sponsored by the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service and will continue through October of 2027.

Stay informed of topp related events in the northeast/mid-atlantic region

Click below to find virtual and in-person seminars related to TOPP program topics from across our region.

Transition to Organic Partnership Program: Cover Cropping

Are you looking to implement or fine tune your cover cropping systems? This workshop will show how cover crops can be the primary input in…

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Soil Amendments for Organic Farms

A session geared towards farming mentees in the Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP) to gain insight into working with organic amendments

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Transition to Organic Partnership Program: Organic Small Fruit Production

This session will cover the entirety of small fruit production, from site selection to harvest, of brambles, strawberries, blueberries, and grapes. Special attention will be…

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Transition to Organic Partnership Program: Organic Greenhouse Production

In this session, Gideon Porth, the owner of Atlas Farm, will share his experiences growing transplants with different systems as he has scaled up over…

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how to take part

CT NOFA will be connecting paid organic certification mentors to mentees for one year. The mentorship program is ongoing and applications will be accepted throughout 2024. CT NOFA staff will assist with helping mentee farmers to navigate the organic certification process. 

We welcome partner non-profit or public organizations to work with CT NOFA to provide community building opportunities, technical assistance, train-the-mentor support, and workshop and field day activities covering topics including organic production practices, certification, conservation planning, business development, regulations, and marketing.

ct nofa is currently accepting applications for:

Mentor Farmers

who have at least 3 years' organic farming experience working directly on farm production, business management, and/or organic certification. This could include experience as an employee, manager, or owner of an organic operation or someone with at least 3 years experience with organic certification.

Mentee Farmers

who have at least 2 years' experience owning or operating a farm including owners, employees, or managers. If you are planning to transition an operation to organic, in the process of transitioning an operation to organic, and/or starting a new certified organic operation, we welcome you to apply to join our mentorship program.

Technical Experts

who are interested in helping provide guidance on specific topics, skills, or areas of interest to farmers who are transitioning to organic methods.

Learn more

Questions or concerns? Click below to contact us.

Please note that application does not guarantee acceptance.

Farmer Roundtables

Provided courtesy of the New Connecticut Farmer Alliance

Cover Cropping on Small Farms

Greenhouse Tomato Growing

Scaling Up the Small Farm

Program news

TOPP Spring Mentorship Program Applications Open
After successful pairings of experienced organic growers with transitioning-to-organic growers in 2023, CT NOFA seeks additional applicants for a Spring 2024 cohort of mentor/mentee pairings. The Northeast/ Mid-Atlantic Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP) mentorship program pairs experienced organic producers and producers transitioning to organic, supports the transition process, and creates a stronger network of...
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The Venture Farming Institute Announces Free Agricultural Training for Aspiring BIPOC Farmers
The Venture Farming Institute (VFI) is an intensive training experience designed for new and beginning farmers of color in CT and RI. This training will feature trainers of color while centering Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) voices and experiences on farming and land stewardship in CT and RI. VFI will strengthen the resilience and...
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TOPP Farmer Roundtable Videos Available
In 2023, CT NOFA co-hosted three roundtables as part of the Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP) to provide knowledge and expertise to farmers who are seeking to transition to certified organic growing practices. The recordings of these roundtables are now available, below (courtesy of the New Connecticut Farmer Alliance). Click here to learn more...
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Soil Health Microscopy Courses for 2024
CT NOFA is offering 3 sessions of microscopy training this year. Participants will view various soils and composts, looking at the different soil structures and the microbes that thrive in healthy soil. Demonstrations include how to prepare a slide for viewing, what you might find and how to evaluate your findings. Participants will be trained...
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