In January, the Farm-to-Consumer Foundation launched “Raw Milk University”, a series of internet-based seminars for dairy producers interested in raw milk operations.
Twelve sessions of the “webinars” were scheduled, in January, April, July and October. Three programs were held each month; one with a focus on dairy cows, one on goats and the third an Open Forum for people interested in raw milk issues.
The webinars were presented using GoToWebinar a service that allows attendees to listen to the raw milk experts, see related pictures and information, and ask questions in real time.
Designed for producers who want to learn the essentials in starting a raw milk dairy or improving any raw milk operation, this series gave participants the opportunity to learn from experts in the raw milk community.
F2C’s goals in launching Raw Milk University were to educate farmers on starting, maintaining, or learning more about how to improve a raw milk dairy operation; educating consumers on safe handling guidelines as well as other ways to support the raw milk movement, to promote raw milk production and consumption and raising awareness of Farm-to-Consumer Foundation’s mission.
Tim Wightman presented webinars focusing on cows, Sharon Wilson presented webinars focusing on goat sessions. Both Tim and Sharon hosted the Open Forum sessions where participants could ask questions directly about their operation.
Tim is a farmer and long-time dairy and soils consultant and serves as F2C President. He operated and designed raw milk dairy farms in several states and now lives and farms in New Hampshire. He consults worldwide with dairy farmers on raw milk safety and direct marketing and provides free consultations for Defense Fund members. The author of the Raw Milk Production Handbook, Tim is also the host in the From Grass to the Glass – Chore Time DVD.
Sharon owned and operated the largest raw goat dairy in Colorado (Natural Choice Dairy, LLC) and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors and Secretary of the Farm-to-Consumer Foundation and was one of the founding board members and treasurer of the Raw Milk Association of Colorado (RMAC). Her role in RMAC was to help to define and create testing regimes for goats and raw goat milk along with quality recognition and recommended collection processes. She has been consulting on raw goat milk dairies nationwide for over 8 years.
All of the sessions have been very well received with participants remarking on the great amounts knowledge and experience shared by Tim and Sharon.
Webinars have been recorded and will soon be offered for sale through F2C’s website.