Conference Recordings

With more than 100 workshops offered, how do you choose? You don't have to! Conference recordings provided by Dove Conference Services will give you the choice of purchasing individual workshops and keynote presentations or the complete set for one low price on CD or MP3. Order on-site or after the event at www.dovecds.com/oeffa.

Entertainment Entertainment

Music and Dancing

After a day of sitting, come enjoy good music and get up and dance! If you're looking for a band with swingin' rhythm and old timey flavor, look no further! The Back Porch Swing Band combines the talents of four notable musicians responsible for the tapping of thousands of feet across Ohio for the last 17 years.

Film Screening:

presented by Chipotle

In this documentary, GMO OMG film director and concerned father, Jeremy Seifert sets out on a journey across the globe to uncover the truth about genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Seifert explores how GMOs affect our children and the health of our planet and whether it's possible for consumers to make informed choices in the absence of labels identifying GMO foods. Along the way, he helps to reveal our current industrial food system and answer a question that is of growing concern to consumers everywhere: What's really on our plate?

OEFFA members and the public are invited to attend the evening entertainment at no cost. All other conference events require paid registration.

Keynote Speakers

presented by Northstar

Alan Guebert


Farming's Future Faces: Shaping the Course of Our Food System

Alan GuebertAlan Guebert is an award-winning freelance agricultural journalist and expert who was raised on a 720 acre dairy farm in southern Illinois. He began the syndicated agriculture column “The Farm and Food File” in 1993 and it now appears weekly in more than 70 newspapers throughout the U.S. and Canada.

He has worked as a writer and senior editor at Professional Farmers of America and Successful Farming magazine and contributing editor at Farm Journal magazine, and currently contributes to the online publication, Daily Yonder.

Throughout his career, Guebert has won numerous awards and accolades for his magazine and newspaper work. In 1997, the American Agricultural Editors’ Association honored him with its highest awards, Writer of the Year and Master Writer.

presented by Chipotle

Dr. Doug Gurian-Sherman


Can’t We All Just Get Along? Techno Fixes, Agroecology, and the Future of Agriculture

Dr. Doug Gurian-Sherman

Dr. Doug Gurian-Sherman is Director of Sustainable Agriculture and Senior Scientist at the Center for Food Safety in Washington, D.C.

He is the founding co-director and former science director for the biotechnology project at the Center for Science and the Public Interest. From 2006 to 2014, he served as senior scientist in the food and environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Previously, Gurian-Sherman worked at the Environmental Protection Agency where he examined the human health impacts and environmental risks of genetically engineered plants. He also worked in the biotechnology group at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and he served on the Food and Drug Administration’s inaugural advisory food biotechnology subcommittee.

He is a respected scientist, widely cited expert on biotechnology and sustainable agriculture, and author of dozens of articles, papers, and reports, including the landmark Union of Concerned Scientists report Failure to Yield: Evaluating the Performance of Genetically Engineered Crops.

Other Featured Presenters

Silvia Abel-Caines, DVM, PhDSilvia Abel-Caines, DVM, PhD — Veterinarian and certified grazing planner Silvia Abel-Caines is a Ruminant Nutritionist for Organic Valley’s CROPP Cooperative. She works with organic dairies across the country helping them balance high forage diets for optimal animal health, milk production, and milk nutritional profile. Join her on Sunday for workshops on balancing organic dairy rations and nutrition for all grass-fed dairies.

Andy Clark, PhDAndy Clark, PhD — Andy Clark, of the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program, has worked with cover crops for almost 30 years. His experiment station and on-farm research experience covers a wide breadth of cover crop techniques and applications, and he is the editor of several editions of the SARE book, Managing Cover Crops Profitably. Join him on Saturday, along with OSU Extension Educator Alan Sundermeier, for an advanced session on cover crops for grain production.

Jill Clark, PhDJill Clark, PhD — Jill Clark is an assistant professor of food policy at the John Glenn School of Public Affairs and leads the Ohio Local Food Policy Council Network. She is the former director of the Ohio office of the American Farmland Trust, and directed the Center for Farmland Policy Innovation at OSU from 2006 to 2012. Join her for a Saturday workshop with OEFFA board member Bryn Bird to learn about engaging in food policy.

Jim FullmerJim Fullmer — Biodynamic farmer Jim Fullmer has been Executive Director of the Demeter Association since 2004. Jim has 25 years of Biodynamic farming experience and operates a certified Biodynamic farm in Oregon. He spent many years as a Biodynamic and organic farm and processing consultant and organic inspector. Join Jim and the Demeter Association's Farmer Education Coordinator Erin Agostinelli on Sunday for an in-depth look at Biodynamic farming.

Don KretschmannDon Kretschmann — Don has been growing organic vegetables and fruit for 35 years in western Pennsylvania. He served on the Pennsylvania Association of Sustainable Agriculture’s (PASA) Board of Directors from 2001 to 2010 and received the PASA Sustainable Agriculture Leadership Award in 2013. An experienced organic orchardist, Don planted his first orchard in 1985. Join him along with Kretschmann Organic Farm's Tim Gebhart for two Saturday workshops to learn about planning and managing your organic orchard.

Featured Workshops

Love Your Healthy Soil

Don't treat your soil like dirt! Plant nutrition expert John Kempf of Advancing Eco-Agriculture will explore how to enhance the soil-plant system’s performance. Marilyn McHugh and Chris Kennedy of the Hummingbird Project will give an introduction to the soil food web. OSU Extension Educator Larry Phalen will share research on how management practices impact microbes and crop health. State soil fertility specialist Steve Culman will explain the available tests for active soil organic matter.

Love Your Fruits and Veggies

Grow more produce every day in every way! Go beyond season extension into season creation with Kip Rondy and Dan Kneier of Green Edge Organic Gardens. Experienced farmers Mike Anderson and Gabo Rodriguez will lead an advanced workshop on summer and winter greenhouse production. Kate Cook of Carriage House Farm will explain small-plot market farming. Todd Schriver of Rock Dove Farm will demonstrate strategies for successful weed management. Maplestar Farm’s Jake and Dawn Trethewey will share their experience selecting equipment for their organic vegetable operation.

Love Your Grains

Feed your community with local, organic grains! Organic grain farmer Carmen Fernholz of the Organic Farmers’ Agency for Relationship Marketing (OFARM) will provide strategies for marketing your grain. Long-time organic grain farmer Daryl Hinderman of Organic Valley will give an advanced workshop on weed management. Experienced organic grain and dairy producer Charlie Eselgroth will compare profits from his conventional and organic field crops and offer tools for business success.

Love Your Livestock

Healthy animals make healthy people! National poultry expert Jim Adkins will teach an extended session on line-breeding heritage poultry. Dr. Guy Jodarksi of Organic Valley will discuss raising healthy organic dairy calves and heifers. Banks Baker and Jonathan Gabis of Greenacres Foundation will show how they raise poultry within a stacked production system. Longtime dairyman Gene DeBruin will discuss his system for low investment dairying. Sasha Sigetic of Black Locust Livestock and Herbal will share practical tips for healthy goats. Bob Hendershot and Jeff McCutchen return with their Pastures for Profit track.

Love Your Farm City

Farm your city with pride! Eitan Sussman and Imani Foster of Keep Growing Detroit will give an extended session on urban market gardening. Join Morgan Taggart of Cuyahoga County Extension for a primer on effective food policy councils. Luci Beachdell of Five Rivers MetroParks and Dave Secor of Old Troy Community Gardens will provide practical advice for managing soil and water resources in community gardens. Cleveland Metroparks naturalist Bethany Majeski will talk about integrating wildlife conservation practices into urban food production. Learn practical permaculture techniques for your home with The Garden Sage Debra Knapke.

Love Your Sustainable Business

Make a happy living on a happy earth! Co-director of Keep Growing Detroit Ashley Adkinson will demonstrate open book finances. Join Jill Moorehead of Eat Well Distribution to learn how to effectively tell your story to buyers. Tiffany Dixon and Deb Thompson of Whole Foods will help you understand today’s organic consumer. Susan Studer King of Buckeye Blooms will share how they add value to their cut flower business with arrangements and events.

Love Your Resilient Homestead

Have the audacity to pursue self-reliance! Homesteader Mary Lou Shaw will provide two workshops on eating local food year-round. Herbalist Dawn Combs of Mockingbird Meadows will describe her vision for local, natural healthcare. Alicia Rocco of Natural Approach Farm Store will share safe herbal remedies for livestock and pets. Professional forester Peter Woyer will help you sustainably manage your woodlot. Urban homesteader Rachel Tayse Baillieul will share her experience building self-sufficiency through community.

Love Your Power to Make Positive Change

Go and give ‘em hell! Participate in a debate on the proposed organic check-off moderated by Alan Guebert. Julie Weatherington-Rice of Bennett and Williams Environmental Consultants and Ted Auch of FracTracker Alliance will discuss the environmental impacts of fracking. Teresa Mills of the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice will provide tools for successful organizing.

With almost 100 workshops to choose from throughout the weekend, OEFFA’s conference has something for everyone to love! Eighteen workshop tracks will be offered, covering everything from farm and garden basics, commercial production, food and farm policy, research, sustainable living, and much more!

Youth Options Youth Options


We encourage parents to bring the family! Christa Hein of Bring the Farm to You is organizing this year’s Kids' Conference, which offers 6-12 year olds educational and fun hands-on activities. Child care is available for younger children, which includes age-appropriate activities and time to take a nap. Private space for nursing can be arranged. Children must be with parents during meal times.


Teenagers have the option of attending the teen conference, where they can create their own personal schedule for the weekend. Choices include attending workshops, volunteering, food preparation, and hands-on projects like making rocket stoves and a conference video.

The Teen Conference is open to ages 12-15. Twelve year old children can choose between the Kid’s Conference and the Teen Conference. Older teens may also choose to attend the conference as an adult attendee. Space is extremely limited, so please register early.

Weekend Schedule

  • Saturday, February 14
  • 9:00-9:15 am
  • Welcome
  • 9:30-11:30 am
  • Workshop Session I
  • (choose one long or two short sessions)
  • 11:30-12:30 pm
  • Exhibit Hall Break
  • 12:30-1:30 pm
  • Lunch
  • 1:45-3:45 pm
  • Workshop Session II
  • (choose one long or two short sessions)
  • 4:00-5:15 pm
  • Keynote Session, Awards, and Announcements
  • Alan Guebert
  • Farming’s Future Faces: Shaping the Course of Our Food System
  • 5:15-6:15 pm
  • Business Meeting*
  • 6:15-7:15 pm
  • Dinner
  • 7:30-9:15 pm
  • Contra Dance with the Back Porch Swing Band*
    Film Screening: GMO OMG*
  • Sunday, February 15
  • 8:30-9:15 am
  • Non-Denominational Service
  • 9:30-11:30 am
  • Workshop Session III
  • (choose one long or two short sessions)
  • 11:30-12:15 pm
  • Exhibit Hall Break
  • 12:15-1:15 pm
  • Lunch
  • 1:30-2:30 pm
  • Workshop Session IV
  • 2:45-4:15 pm
  • Keynote Session, Announcements, and Closing Remarks
  • Doug Gurian-Sherman
  • Can’t We All Just Get Along? Techno Fixes, Agroecology, and the Future of Agriculture
  • *OEFFA members are invited to attend the business meeting and the evening entertainment at no cost. The exhibit hall is also open to the public on Saturday from 5:15-6:30 pm. All other conference events require paid registration.
Pre Conference Events

Principles of Regenerative Agriculture

Many current agricultural practices exploit the native fertility of our soils, creating an unsustainable system unable to support healthy soils and crops. Truly sustainable agricultural systems must utilize regenerative models which allow soil and plant health to improve, not degrade, over time.

Join John Kempf of Advancing Eco-Agriculture to learn the principles which support re-generative farming systems and what’s possible when plant health is approached from a fundamentally different perspective. Discover the differences between healthy and unhealthy plants and find out how you can produce disease- and pest-resistant crops, which are healthier and more nutritious for the animals and people who eat them.

Slow Poultry: Sustainable Poultry Production

Join Jim Adkins of the Sustainable Poultry Network to learn about effective and profitable strategies for sustainable poultry production.

Designed for poultry producers of any scale, participants will learn about the unique advantages of sustainable production systems while exploring the history of traditional heritage breeds and the transition to hybrid breeds and industrial production models. Walk away with an understanding of the breeding, feed, forage, facilities, and care required for different size production models, and how to make your poultry business profitable through effective financial planning, marketing, and consumer education.

Udder Health and Mastitis Control in Organic Dairies

Practical management and mastitis control practices can improve milk quality and farm profitability for organic dairy producers.

Join veterinarians Dr. Päivi Rajala-Schultz and Dr. Luciana da Costa from the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine and Organic Valley Cooperative staff veterinarian Dr. Guy Jodarski to learn the basic requirements for good udder health, strategies for managing clinical mastitis, and more.

Our Sponsors

Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream



  • Conference Cultivators:
  • Albert Lea Seed Company
  • Eban Bakehouse
  • Edible Cleveland
  • Edible Ohio Valley
  • Green BEAN Delivery
  • Green Field Farms
  • Lucky Cat Bakery
  • Metro Cuisine
  • Raisin Rack Natural Food Market
  • Stauf's Coffee Roasters
  • Swainway Urban Farm
  • Whole Foods Market
  • Conference Seeders:
  • Advancing Eco-Agriculture
  • Andelain Fields
  • C-TEC of Licking County
  • Casa Nueva
  • Columbus Culinary Institute
  • Curly Tail Organic Farm
  • DNO Produce
  • Eden Foods
  • Kevin Morgan Studio
  • King Family Farm
  • Law Office of David G. Cox
  • Luna Burgers
  • Northridge Organic Farm
  • Ohio Environmental Council
  • Sustainable Poultry Network
  • WQTT Ag Today Central Ohio
  • Conference Friends:
  • Bad Dog Acres
  • Bexley Natural Market
  • Bluebird Farm
  • Carriage House Farm
  • Glass Rooster Cannery
  • Hartzler Dairy Farm
  • The Hills Market
  • Krazy Kraut
  • Lucky's Market
  • Marshy Meadows Farm
  • Middlefield Original Cheese
  • Nourse Farms
  • Schmidt Family Farms
  • Storehouse Tea
  • Stutzman Farms
  • Wayward Seed Farm