Continuous Improvement

NSFA has launched a project through Farm and Workforce Development to help our members learn about and apply Continuous Improvement principles and best practices to their farming operations.
Keep your eye on our events page and the NSFA e-news for dates and times of various events and workshops.

What is CI and why does it matter?
Continuous improvement identifies strategic needs, establishes baselines for improvement, prioritizes root causes and implements solutions. These can be things such as standardization of work, lean maintenance or applying 5S methods to your workspaces.
We want to support our members in their CI efforts, help improve products, services, and gain efficiencies in their processes. The goal is for our farm operators to do more with less so that the company can reduce costs while increasing productivity.

The Project

Tier 1 – Awareness
An introduction to CI concepts and processes, such as Lean Manufacturing, to raise awareness of its relevance to agriculture operations. This will be conducted in a workshop format led by a facilitator. Awareness sessions will be both virtual and in person and are completely free to attend.
Upcoming dates and locations:
May 26th – Windsor
July 28th – Antigonish
October 6th – Truro
October 18 – Berwick
(See individual event pages for details and to register)

Tier 2 –  Connection
We will provide opportunities for organized tours of local farms and/or processing facilities. This will allow attendees to see actual implementation of CI principles plus develop networks among producers. These tours are completely free to attend. Stay tuned for advertised dates and locations.

Tier 3 – Peer Learning / CI Challenges
We will host small, 2-3 day knowledge-sharing workshops to further develop understanding of CI processes and their practical application. An on-farm need will be identified and that farm will host the workshop.  Our members will be brought in and lead through a process to identify solutions.
If you are interested in applying to host a CI Challenge, please fill out a form here. There are no costs associated with attending or hosting a CI Challenge!

Tier 4 – In Depth Support
NSFA members will be given the opportunity for in-depth, intensive support from a trainer experienced in CI best practices. This would include 60-80 hours of training, capacity building and mentoring. Note: Candidates will need to be pre-screened and willing to invest a percentage of their own funds (approximately 15% of total costs)

Tier 5 – Implementation Coaching
For members who have completed Tier 4 and need a bit more time and support, additional training/ mentoring hours can be applied for. In this tier, additional recommendations may be made to help ensure that farms are able to implement their solutions. This will also help with organizing for more complicated changes (planned shut down, order supplies, schedule downtime).