CADE and SUNY Cobleskill announce the Farm & Food Business Incubator’s Winter Business Workshop Series

Participants may earn FFBI Certification


Beginning Saturday, February 2nd, CADE and SUNY Cobleskill will kick off their annual Farm and Food Business Incubator (FFBI) winter workshop series.  

For more than 25 years, CADE (The Center for Agricultural Development and Entrepreneurship) has been working with entrepreneurs to build a more viable food system.  SUNY Cobleskill is one of the leading agricultural colleges in the Northeast and is the home of new farm and food business incubation facilities including commercial kitchens and licensed dairy and meat processing facilities.

The Farm and Food Business Incubator (FFBI) is a partnership between CADE and SUNY Cobleskill launched in 2016 and is a  New York State certified business incubator designated by NYSTAR.

This series is part of a unique array of business development services FFBI offers to agribusinesses, farm and food business entrepreneurs, and beginning farmers seeking to develop or expand their operations.

CADE’s Executive Director Phoebe Schreiner states:

“Businesses receiving incubator assistance generally exhibit greater longevity and profitability. In the last two years, those who participated in the workshop series reported a 75% increase in their business acumen.  Our farm and food business incubator participants receive customized assistance with business and market plan development and preparation for finding and securing financial resources.

“This workshop series is important for entrepreneurs who need to develop a business plan, preparing them to approach lending institution and other potential funders. Participants will also learn about their options for forming an appropriate legal entity, relevant rules and regulations, labeling, farm transition and farmland acquisition, and more - all topics aimed at increasing the number and diversity of successful farm enterprises in New York.”  

The workshop series consists of three consecutive Saturday morning long-form sessions (February 2, February 9, and February 16) as well as supplemental shorter offerings on Wednesday evenings.  

The series will culminate in capstone “Pitching Practice” sessions (March 14 and March 26), at which workshop participants will have the opportunity to present the business plan they have developed during the program in an informal setting to groups that will include peers, stakeholders and potential funders.  Participating in these events will help entrepreneurs to practice their business pitch and anticipate questions that potential funders will have.

Each of the workshop sessions will be facilitated by CADE staff and will feature specialist presenters on the topic at hand.  All sessions will be interactive, hands-on, built around real-world examples and case studies. Participants will be encouraged to bring and share examples and questions from their own experiences and plans.

Participants are encouraged to attend all of the events, but may also choose only those that are of special interest to them.  However, only participants who complete all of the components of the Saturday workshops and at least one of the Capstone Pitching Practice sessions will be eligible to receive the FFBI graduation certificate.  

There is no charge for any of the workshops in the series, but pre-registration is required.  

All workshops will be held at CADE’s Oneonta office location at 189 Main Street, 5th Floor, Oneonta, NY 13820.