WMRFS is dedicated to the learning process. In order to shift the paradigm from present-conventional food systems into in equitable, innovative and resilient systems, understanding local and global problems and solutions are essential. We partner with farmers and organizations who keep education to the core of their practice, and focus on topics such as:

  • Soil building techniques such as no-till, rotational grazing, and increasing biodiversity
  • Healthy eating and nutrient dense foods
  • Food preservation for seasonal extension and food sovereignty
  • Community building and personal impact through somatic inquiry
  • Food systems issues and solutions
  • …& more!

Continue the conversation by checking out our Food For Thought or Resources page. Want to host a workshop? Contact Hannah at rfs @ nofamass.org


Agroforestry practices cover a broad range of land use patterns where pasture or crops are integrated with trees and shrubs. Intentionally combining agriculture and forestry is great for our farmers and our bioregion, resulting in many benefits including: increased yields of a variety of nutrient dense foods, enhanced farmer livelihoods from income generation, increased biodiversity, improved soil structure and health, reduced erosion, and carbon sequestration.

NOFA/Mass is partnering with the Regenerative Design Group to help 6 mentee farms plan and implement their agroforestry sites through 2025. NOFA/Mass will be helping with soil technical assistance, facilitating farmer engagement, and hosting multiple learning opportunities for our farmers and our communities. 

We’ll also be attending a variety of events within the next few years to bring these amazing creatures to the people of Massachusetts with our partner Forestopia. This includes introductions to the variety of agroforestry friends that we can grow here, tastings, and info on the benefits of agroforestry.

Introducing our bi-monthly Go Nuts Agroforestry Community Call. We’re calling in our community enthusiasts and experts to lead us through the ins and outs, olds and news, on the ground and in the mind aspects of agroforestry in the Northeast. Some of our topics include growing practices and site layout, soil health, species selection, infrastructure and processing. Might you have something to share? Get in touch with us!

To see our events or join our bi-monthly community calls, go to our Events page.

Did somebody say soil health?

If applied well, agroforestry practices have the potential to improve soil health leading to improved crop productivity, reduced fertilizer and pesticide use, and increased resilience to climate change. Here’s how:

Soil Organic Matter: Agroforestry practices, such as intercropping and alley cropping, can help increase soil organic matter levels. Trees and crops both contribute to the organic matter content of the soil. Organic matter is important for soil health because it provides a food source for soil microorganisms and helps improve soil structure.

Soil Structure: Trees in agroforestry systems can help improve soil structure by providing a source of organic matter and by reducing soil compaction. These systems are rarely tilled, which minimizes soil disturbance. Roots of trees and crops create pathways for water and air to move through the soil, improving soil structure.

Erosion Control: Agroforestry practices can help reduce soil erosion by providing a barrier against wind and water erosion. Trees and crops help to stabilize the soil, reducing the potential for erosion. This minimizes the amount of sediment in our water and keeps our soils nutrient dense.

Nutrient Availability: Agroforestry systems can improve soil fertility by providing a source of nutrients through leaf litter and root exudates. Because there is a diversity of plants, there is less pressure to repeatedly strip the soil of the same nutrients year to year. Integrating animals also improves the availability of natural fertilizers, creating a closed loop system and decreasing the need to buy outsourced amendments. Some trees and crops can also help fix nitrogen from the atmosphere, making it available for plant growth.

Soil Biological Activity: Agroforestry systems can enhance soil biological activity by providing a diverse habitat for all creatures who live below ground, especially the most micro of organisms. Trees and crops provide different root exudates and leaf litter, which can support a diverse range of species and soil microorganisms, keeping nutrients biologically available for the species growing in these systems.

Agroforestry Resources

USDA Agroforestry 

Regenerative Design Group’s Agroforestry Crops for the Northeast

About Agroforestry at NOFA/Mass Brochure (PDF)

Agroforestry Foods: Introduction & Integration Guide (PDF)

Free content on NOFA/Mass youtube channel

NOFA/Mass Events page

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