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Number of WI Women Owning Farms Increasing Rapidly

August 6, 2012

SPRING VALLEY, Wis. - Increasingly, women hold the potential to influence the future of Wisconsin's rural landscape and agriculture. The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service, MOSES, is again this summer presenting a series of day-long on-farm workshops called "In Her Boots: Sustainable Farming For Women, By Women."

Lisa Kivirist, who directs the MOSES Rural Women's Project, says the workshops offer tremendous networking opportunities.

"It's connecting with other people's stories and hearing how they did it, and how they started farming, or what they're farming, or how they're marketing what they're doing, and how they're creating a livelihood around it, by being able to meet people face-to-face doing that, and importantly meeting other women in your local area."

There are two "In Her Boots" workshops in August and one in September.

Increasingly, rural land is being owned by women. Nearly 10,000 Wisconsin family farms are now owned by women, whose numbers in agriculture have steadily been increasing.

"This is another group of women, primarily seniors and senior widowed women who are inheriting their family farms, and for the first time may be in a management position about their land, and are very open and interested in having more conservation land practices."

Kivirist says the workshops provide a crucial link between the women and the resources they need.

In addition to the "In Her Boots" workshops, this year MOSES has partnered with the Women, Food, and Agriculture Network to develop Women Caring for the Land workshops - two in August and two in September. Kivirist says these workshops are free.

"This is a unique resource to help connect women with basic conservation principles, and importantly, with local resources and agency staff, and programs that they might be interested in or qualify for."

Complete information about registering for both sets of workshops is available at the Rural Women's Project tab at

Tim Morrissey, Public News Service - WI