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Farm Resources

Program Contact: Tessa Halloran, Master Gardener/Small Farms Coordinator
(360) 427-9670 Ext. 682 •

Cover of the "2019 Handbook for Small and Direct Marketing Farms: Regulations and Strategies for Farm and Food Businesses"Handbook for Small and Direct Marketing Farms: Regulations and Strategies for Farm and Food Businesses

Last published in 2019 by the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA), this is your one-stop-shop on information for running your farm business, marketing, voluntary certifications, and regulations.

  • PDFs of all sections are available through the WSDA website.
  • Hard copies can be ordered from the WSDA for the cost of shipping.
  • Limited numbers of hard copies are available at the WSU Extension Mason County office – ask our Program Coordinator if there are some available!

Access to Land

WSU Regional Small Farms Access to Land Resources

Mason County Resources:

Mason County Community Development – building permits, planning department, site inspections, cottage industry permits.

Mason County Assessor’s Office – property and parcel information search



What is agritourism? Agritourism allows farmers to diversify their revenue streams by linking commercial production and/or processing with tourism to attract visitors to a farm, ranch, or other agricultural business to generate additional income.

Examples include:

  • Farm stands or stores
  • Farm stays
  • Wedding and event facilities
  • Farm tours and classes
  • U-pick
  • Pumpkin patches, corn mazes, Christmas tree farms
  • Tasting events and farm to table dinners

WSU Regional Small Farms Program Agritourism Resources



Shellfish have been cultivated and harvested in Mason County since time immemorial. Currently, Mason County is the largest producer of shellfish in Washington State; in 2016, shellfish farming was the second largest employer, with over 70 farms generating $32 million in revenue annually.

Pacific Shellfish Institute

Washington State Department of Health – Shellfish
Apply for permits and certifications, get information on shellfish-related illnesses, current water quality maps, and more.

Washington State Shellfish Safety Map

Mason County Shellfish Safety

Washington Sea Grant

Recreational Shellfish:

Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife Shellfishing Regulations

Gathering Safe Shellfish in Washington

Invasive Species:

European Green Crab

WSU & WA Sea Grant MoltSearch Program


Crop Production & Soils

Soil Testing:

A&L Western Agricultural Laboratories

KUO Testing Labs


Fertilizing with Manure and Other Organic Amendments

Web Resources:

WSU Extension Regional Small Farms Program Soils Resources

USDA NRCS Web Soil Survey

Soils for Salmon

Tilth Alliance Composting Resources

US Composting Council

Department of Ecology Composting

Washington Organic Recycling Council

WSU Puyallup Compost and Nutrient Management

Farm Business Management

Northwest Agriculture Business Center

Business Planning Resources

Enterprise Budgets

Farm Financing

Farm Accounting

Farm Taxes

Farm Labor


Grant Resources

Farmers Markets

Mason County:

Thurston County:

Lewis County:

Pierce County:

Food Safety

Mason County Public Health and Human Services

Washington State Food Worker Course

WSDA Food Safety Program

WSDA – Food Safety Regulations for Specific Products (Fact Sheets)

WSDA – Regulations for Food Processing (Fact Sheets)


Western WA Forestry Staff & Faculty:

Mason Conservation District Stewardship Foresters:

WA State Department of Natural Resources Service Forestry Program:

Small Forest Landowner Regulation Assistance Program


Washington State Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network

Northwest Interagency Coordination Center


WSU Forestry Program

WSU Forestry Resources by Topic

Washington State Department of Natural Resources

Washington Forest Protection Association

Washington Farm Forestry Association

Christmas Tree Production:

Growing Christmas Trees in the Pacific Northwest

National Christmas Tree Association

Pacific Northwest Christmas Tree Association

Puget Sound Christmas Tree Association

Weed and Vegetation Management Strategies in Christmas Trees

WSU Christmas Tree Research Program

Livestock & Dairy

Western WA Animal Agriculture Staff & Faculty:

Mason Conservation District Farm Assistance Program:

WSU Livestock Nutrient Program

WSU Animal Agriculture Website

WSU Regional Small Farms Program Animal Agriculture Resources


See the ‘Food Safety’ section for links to resources on the processing and selling of livestock & dairy products.

Local Food Hubs

South Sound Fresh:
South Sound Fresh is an online marketplace of locally grown and produced food. We make it possible for farmers to work together to meet the growing demand for local, sustainable food in your area. Farmers benefit from the marketing, selling, packaging and delivering of their produce and prepared foods. Our marketplace brings fresh, healthy, locally grown and produced food to you, the buyer, in a cost-effective manner on a weekly basis.

South Sound Fresh Website

Evergreen United Food Hub: Primarily provides fresh, local, unique produce to restaurants in the South Sound area. All of their produce is grown and delivered within 100 miles of Seattle from farms that are long term partners. Most are Certified Organic. They pick up product at the farm and deliver straight to our customers from Seattle to the South Sound.

Evergreen United Food Hub Website

Southwest Washington Food Hub: The Southwest Washington Food Hub is a farmer-owned cooperative food aggregation, distribution, and marketing service currently operating in Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, Grays Harbor, Mason, and Pacific Counties.

Southwest Washington Food Hub Website

Marketing Resources

WSU Regional Small Farms Program Marketing Resources



Washington Farmers Markets

Tilth Alliance

Washington State Department of Agriculture

Washington State Farm to School Network

WA Center for Women in Business

WSDA Farm to School Toolkit

Washington State Grange

Washington State Farm Bureau

Young Farmers Coalition

Washington Beekeepers Association

Mason County Conservation District

Washington Natural Resources Conservation Service

USDA Beginning Farmers and Ranchers

ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture

USDA National Agricultural Library

National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition

Poultry & Eggs

Mason Conservation District Poultry Processing Equipment Program:

The Mason Conservation District has two Poultry Processing Units that include scalder units, pluckers, and kill cone stands for holding up to 8 kill cones at a time. We also have a Poultry Processing Trailer that can handle larger flocks. The units are available for rent to minimize schedule conflicts and help poultry producers be more efficient.

$35 per day or $70 per weekend Featherman Units
$50 per day or $100 per weekend for larger Poultry Man Poultry Processing Trailer

Click Here for More Information about Poultry Processor Rental

Eggs – Farmers Markets & Direct to Retail

Farmers selling eggs (from a chicken, goose, turkey, duck, guinea, or any species of fowl) at farmers markets and through direct to retail sales (i.e. restaurants and grocery stores) must comply with the requirements of RCW 69.25 and be licensed through the Washington State Department of Revenue (WSDOR) as an Egg Handler/Dealer. Local health districts have jurisdiction over farmers markets in their areas and may conduct market inspections to assure vendor compliance with local rules and regulations.

Direct to retail sales also require obtaining Egg Seals from the Washington State Department of Agriculture.

Eggs – On-Farm Sales & CSA

Poultry or egg producers may sell eggs from their own flocks directly to the end consumer from the place of production without the purchase of an Egg Handler/Dealer License or Egg Seals from WSDA

Shell eggs are a perishable food and must be handled properly with care under cold and sanitary conditions to assure consumer safety.

WSDA Eggs Website


WSDA Meat & Poultry Assistance Program

General WSU Poultry Resources

WSU Veterinary Medicine – Poultry

WSU Pasture Poultry Resources

Avian Flu Resources

American Pastured Poultry Producers Association (APPPA)

Niche Meat Processors Assistance Network 

ATTRA – Sustainable Poultry 


See the ‘Food Safety’ section for links to resources on the processing and selling of poultry & egg products.

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