California’s Specialty Crop
Workforce Development Program
Career Pathways, Future Jobs, and Local Food Systems

Driving the Next Generation Talent and Tools

Support workforce development programs aimed at attracting, supporting, and providing high-quality jobs and leadership opportunities for a diverse agricultural workforce, while also driving research and real-time feedback from farmers and ranchers to stimulate and accelerate innovation to solve problems and build opportunities.

Reduced Inequalities; Operational Adjustments to Meet Training and Support Service Needs; Employer & College Convenings; Training and Customized Education for Existing Workforce; Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure; Create Jobs  & Career Pathways That Create Workforce Development Opportunities; Connect Organizations to Create Training, Education opportunities, and Comprehensive Support Serivces to Address Need; Photos of produce and farm

Providing Services for:

  • Growers & Processors
  • Local & Regional Food Systems
  • Socially Disadvantaged Farmers & Farmworkers


  • Specialty Crop Employer Training Needs
  • Student Internships
  • Agriculture Career Pathways within Community Colleges
  • Skill Infrastructure Development (Ag Tech, Local Foods, Biologicals)
  • Current and Future Agricultural Jobs Needs (Education/Certification)
  • Counseling and Networking to Expand Local and Regional Food Systems
  • Farmworker Resources

The California Specialty Crop Workforce Development Program works to align and upscale agricultural workforce skills and training needs to meet the requirements of specialty crop producers and processors. The program also supports the development and resilience of specialty crop businesses in local and regional food systems to expand economic opportunity.

High Road Training Partnerships — Industry led skills infrastructure supporting Regional economic growth for local communities

California’s specialty crop industry can help drive the agenda for where innovation is needed and identify growing and upcoming skills gaps. Individual companies, commodity groups and trade associations can also directly support innovation and research efforts for the betterment of food systems, on-farm education, training and employee development. Making California a better place to live because of what we grow and how we grow it.

Additional Resources

CA Regions


Region 1
North State/Bay Area
Akoniti Leadership
Heidi Carpenter Harris —
Region 2
North San Joaquin/Coastal
Antinetti Consulting
Rachael Antinetti —
Region 3
South Central/Inland
Vista Consulting
Lydia Chan-Nattey —
Region 4
South San Joaquin Valley
ARKEN Strategies +
Karen Arken —
Agricultural Technology
Next Generation Ag Workforce (Western Growers)
Carrie Peterson —
Business & Market Development (International)
Lucas Farrar, Outreach & Marketing Specialist —
CDFA Farm Equity Office
Thea Rittenhouse, CDFA Farm Equity Advisor —
Carmen Carrasco, Small Farm Business Liaison —