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Fostering Sustainability and Innovation in Agriculture
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Upcoming Events




The 4th Annual Seedstock Sustainable Agriculture Conference: Innovation and the Rise of Local Food is set for Nov. 3 – 4, 2015 at UC San Diego. The conference will explore innovations that farmers and entrepreneurs are embracing to grow food sustainably, create new businesses, improve food access, and manage resources efficiently against the dueling backdrop of a lingering drought and burgeoning local food marketplace. Below are additional details on the two-day conference.

The Future Farm Field Trip:

Day 1 (Nov. 3, 2015) – The Future Farm Field Trip offers an excursion into the diversity of urban and state-of-the-art indoor agriculture operations in Southern California. Tour participants will be treated to lectures and sessions from pioneering farmers who are embracing innovative business models and growing systems to both increase food security and take advantage of the escalating demand for local food. Scheduled stops on the tour thus far include:

  • Home Town Farms – a three-acre indoor hydroponic farming operation in San Marcos, CA that grows certified organic crops as diverse as tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, peppers, and strawberries.
  • [email protected] Urban Farm – a one-acre working farm located in the heart of downtown San Diego that serves as the outdoor classroom for the Sustainable Urban Agriculture program at San Diego City College.
  • Sundial Farm – a family-owned farm that utilizes state-of-the-art hydroponic systems to produce high quality, organic leafy greens, including arugula, basil, butter leaf, kale and romaine.

Conference Day:

Day 2 (Nov. 4, 2015) Attendees will convene at the Beyster Auditorium at the Rady School of Management in San Diego for a series of panels and keynotes that will address the economic impact of a burgeoning and diverse small farm economy that is embracing innovation, sustainability and community to take advantage of a growing local food marketplace in cities and counties across the country. Program presenters will explore indoor agriculture and the expansion of the local food marketplace, urban farming and local food access, water management, and more.

Learn More –

Select Confirmed Speakers:

Gus Schumacher – Founding Board Chair and Vice President of Wholesome Wave
Pierre Sleiman – Founder and CEO of Go Green Agriculture
Lucy Norris – Director of the Regional Food Systems Program at Ag Innovations
Daron “Farmer D” Joffe – Director of Agricultural Innovation and Development at Leichtag Foundation
Erik Oberholtzer – Co-founder of Tender Greens
Amy McCann – Co-founder and CEO of Local Food Marketplace
Robert Tse – State Broadband Coordinator for USDA CA-Rural Development
Anchi Mei – Senior Program Manager for the Food Security and Community Health Department at International Rescue Committee (IRC)
Damian Valdez – Farmer at [email protected] Urban Farm

To purchase early bird tickets, please visit:

For sponsorship opportunities, please send inquiries to: sponsor [at]

If you are interested in participating as a conference speaker, please send your request to: participant [at]

Previous Events


Seedstock’s 3rd Annual Sustainable Agriculture Innovation Conference – Reintegrating Ag: Local Food Systems and the Future of Citiesis slated for Tuesday and Wednesday, November 11 – 12, 2014. The conference will explore such topics as:

  • Reintegrating Agriculture into the City
  • The local food production and commercial potential of controlled environment agriculture in cities;
  • How city and county policy can encourage investment in and support of local and urban agriculture;
  • Business models and technological solutions from irrigation technology to supply chain innovations necessary to augment the growth of local food systems

Register here:

Conference Summary:

Day 1 – The Urban Ag Field Trip

The first day of the event offers an urban agriculture field trip to four locations throughout Southern California. Participants will have the opportunity to tour one of the few operating hydroponic shipping container farms in the U.S. at The Container Yard in Downtown L.A., check out the rooftop farm atop The Jonathan Club that supplies its onsite restaurant, visit the 1.5 acres high school urban farming operation at Muir Ranch and receive a sneak peek of L.A. Prep, a food production business incubator for local entrepreneurs where they will be treated to lectures that examine successful local food system innovations in Southern California.

Day 2 – Conference at UCLA Anderson School of Management

On Day 2, attendees will convene at the UCLA Anderson School of Management in Los Angeles for a series of panels and breakout sessions in which presenters from local food policy experts and urban agriculture entrepreneurs to investors and thought leaders in the sustainable agriculture industry will explore new approaches to strengthen the marketplace for local food and foster the revitalization of urban areas by embracing innovation in sustainable agriculture.


A.G. Kawamura – Former Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture and Co-chair of the Solutions from the Land Dialogue
Robert Egger – Founder and President of L.A. Kitchen
Mark Glassock – Director of Special Projects Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust
Michel Algazi – Chairman and CEO of Freshology and founder of Food Centricity
Erik Oberholzer – Co-founder of Tender Greens
Nicola Kerslake – Founder at New Bean Capital
Dwight Detter – Local Forager for Whole Foods Market
Mud Baron – Project Director at Muir Ranch
Daniel Allen – CEO at Farmscape
Wilton Risenhoover – CTO of and UCLA Venture Capital Fund
Colin Archipley – Co-founder of Archi’s Acres and the Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training Program
Erik Cutter – Managing Director of Alegria Fresh
Clare Fox – Director of Policy and Innovation, the Los Angeles Food Policy Council
Kimberly Kessler – Policy and Special Programs Director, Resnick Program for Food Law & Policy
John Mesko – Executive Director at Sustainable Farming Association
Erika Block – Founder and CEO at Local Orbit
Rickey Smith – Founder of Urban Green
Sasha Kanno – Founder of Long Beach Local and Farm Lot 59
Rob Trice – Founder of Better Food Ventures and Co-founder of The Mixing Bowl
Nurit Katz – Chief Sustainability Officer at UCLA
David Rosenstein – Founder of EVO Farm and Chairman of the Aquaponics Association – Western Region


Seedstock in partnership with the City and Community of Riverside hosted the Grow Riverside: Citrus and Beyond!, a two-day, outcomes-based conference to examine and develop solutions that will enable cities, Riverside in this particular case, to reconnect to their agricultural roots and galvanize citizens, growers, advocates, government officials and other major stakeholders around the economic opportunities that can result from employing sustainable agriculture.

Event Date: March 19 – 20, 2014

Location: Riverside Convention Center

Website and Additional Information:

Conference Program Information:

To inquire about scholarship tickets, email: email hidden; JavaScript is required

Conference Focus Areas:

The conference will explore the following topic areas through keynote presentations and panels:

  • Building a Local Agriculture Future
  • Developing Economically Viable Small-scale Farming Solutions
  • Health and Community Benefits of Local Food
  • Funding the Future of Farming in Riverside
  • Citrus and Beyond: Riverside’s Agriculture future
  • Riverside Grown: The Local Food Landscape
  • Urban Farming in Riverside
  • Forming a Local Food Alliance

Select Speakers included:

Dr. Glenda Humiston – CA State Director for U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development
Representative Mark Takano – California’s 41st Congressional District
Curt Covington – Managing Director, Agribusiness Banking Division for Bank of the West
Val Dolcini – State Executive Director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s FSA
Paula Daniels – Founder of the Los Angeles Food Policy Council
Don Nishiguchi – Whole Foods Market
Colin and Karen Archipley – Archi’s Acres and Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training program
Pierre Sleiman – Founder of Go Green Agriculture
Bob Knight – Founder of Inland Orange Conservancy and Old Grove Orange, Inc.
Rodney K. Taylor – Director of Nutrition Services, for the Riverside Unified School District


seedstock annual conference

On November 5 – 6, 2013 Seedstock hosted the 2nd Annual Seedstock Sustainable Ag Innovation Conference – Farming: Fundamentals and the Future which examined the fundamentals of feeding a growing population as well as innovative solutions to bolster the future food system.

Major themes that were explored include:

  • Solutions and business models that have the potential to help local producers increase their presence in the supply chain in order to meet the demands of a growing population.
  • Economic opportunities as well as the environmental and societal benefits of embracing, developing and investing sustainable farms, practices, technologies and startup companies.

Select Speakers included:

Thaddeus Barsotti – Farm Fresh To You
Dwight Detter – Whole Foods Market
Brent Taylor – Beyond Meat
Erik Oberholtzer – Tender Greens
Val Dolcini – CA State Executive Director of the USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA)
Adam Chapnick – Indiegogo
David Rosenstein – EVO Farm
Nicola Kerslake – Battle Born Venture Fund
Sharon Cech – Urban Environmental Policy Institute (UEPI)
Rachel Surls – UCANR Sustainable Food Systems Advisor
Adam Navidi – Future Foods Farms, Green2go Restaurant and Market
Dan Allen – Farmscape
Laura Avery – Santa Monica Farmers Market
John Mesko – Sustainable Farming Association
Lucy Norris – Northwest Agriculture Business Center


NEVADA INDOOR AGRICULTURE CONFERENCE was held, Wednesday, April 24, 2013 at the Historic 5th Street School in Downtown Las Vegas.

The one day conference brought together a diverse audience of thought leaders, industry professionals, entrepreneurs, farmers and investors to explore solutions and opportunities to increase indoor agriculture production in a sustainable manner.


Paul SelinaVillage Farms
David Bell – Houweling’s Tomatoes
Pierre Sleiman – Go Green Agriculture
Darcy Landis – Whole Foods Market 
Eileen Christensen – BEC Environmental
Paul MatteucciUS Venture Partners
Zack Porter – Pegasus Capital Advisors
Mark EsteeCampo Reno
Ken Kesick – Hydro Greens
Chris HigginsHort Americas & Urban Ag Products
Doug Taylor – U of Nevada Extension (Producer to Chef Program)

The SEEDSTOCK SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE INNOVATION CONFERENCE, which took place on October 24, 2012 at UCLA Anderson School of Management, focused on the economic opportunities as well as environmental and societal benefits of embracing, developing and investing in sustainable farms, practices, technologies and startups.

Featured SPEAKERS:

Adam Dell – Austin Ventures
Martin AnenbergFreshPoint
Colin Archipley – Archi’s Acres
John Bailey – Top 10 Produce
Erika Block – Local Orbit
Danielle Gould – Food+Tech Connect
Casey Houweling – Houweling’s Tomatoes
David Jeromin – Golden Mean Capital
Nicola Kerslake – NIREC
Paul Matteucci – U.S. Venture Partners
Don Nishiguchi – Whole Foods Market
Erik Oberholtzer – Tender Greens
David Rosenstein – EVO Farm
Rickey Smith – Urban Green
Rachel Surls – UC Cooperative Extension

To explore the flight to innovation in agriculture, Seedstock, in association with the Entrepreneur Association and the Harold and Pauline Price Center for Entrepreneurial Studies hosted the event, Re-Imagining Agriculture: Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurship in Southern California, on March 7, 2012 at the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Featured SPEAKERS:

Colin Archipley: Archis Acres and the Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training Program
Jesse DuBois and Dan Allen: Farmscape
David Rosenstein: EVO Farm
Pierre Sleiman: Go Green Agriculture

Seedstock, in association with Rady Entrepreneur Club held a panel on November 30, 2011 entitled, Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurship in Southern California at the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego. The sold out event featured seven entrepreneurs discussing their companies and their reasons for pursuing and developing sustainable agriculture ventures and technologies.

From high tech indoor urban farms that utilize the latest vertical farming technology to grow food cleanly, efficiently and without chemicals to renewable energy technology that generates electricity from agricultural waste, the entrepreneurs on the panel embodied the promise and vision of a sustainable agriculture industry that is set to experience explosive growth.

Featured SPEAKERS:

Seth Burns: CEO and CFO of Biogas & Electric
Dan Gibbs: CEO and Co-founder of Home Town Farms
Thomas Del Monte: President of Interra Energy
Colin Archipley: CEO of Archi’s Acres and VSAT
Ralph Crevoshay: CEO of VermiVision
Don Nishiguchi: Regional Local Producer Buyer for Whole Foods Market
Jeff Robbins: Revolution Landscape