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The Compost Exchange

January 14, 2017 @ 9:00 am - 5:00 pm


Trade Secrets for Implementing Regenerative Agriculture

JANUARY 14, 2017 ~ ST. CLOUD, MN ~ 9am-5pm

 What is the Compost Exchange?


An opportunity to learn from and meet others who:

  • Aim to produce the highest quality Compost products containing the soil food web

  • Implement soil food web methodologies in their growing systems

  • Build or retrofit machinery to introduce the soil food web into growing systems

  • Want to swap compost

Dear Reader,

It is likely we have met. It’s possible that I have visited or worked with you on your farm, Compost operation or pasture. It could be you have attended one of the microscope workshops I offered in identifying and cultivating the soil food web. Maybe, we have met briefly in passing at a conference or on the airplane. If we haven’t met, then I trust you have found your way here, through the soil health community and I look forward to our meeting.

In the last 6 years of my work as a soil builder I have met thousands of people! To quote musician Jackson C. Frank, “Wherever I gone, wherever I been and gone, the blues are all the same.” Worldwide, we have mined our soil and the band-aid for the symptoms has been and continues to be chemicide and synthetic nutrient agriculture. Our living soil is gone (even on land that has been organic for 10-20 years), our water is polluted, our families and communities are ill from chemical exposure, even the rain carries toxins across property, county and state lines.

I refuse to believe the negative impacts of chemicide agriculture was any one’s intention. I have never met a farmer that wasn’t making the best choice they could with the tools they had to feed their family, community and to make a sound living. Somehow, it’s not penciling out. Somehow, profits keeps shrinking even when we are following the rules. We hear, “Buy this seed, coat it with this fill in the blank-icide, spray everything with this liquid ~ yes of course it’s safe… but don’t breathe it in or let it touch you, your child, your dog… churn the soil with this, pray for the rain, pray for the deluge of rain to stop, set it on fire…”.

You have been following the rules. You heard the Mr. or Mrs. Ph.D. from such and such university, you even hired the consultant. You read the research and allowed research to take place on your farm. Then there was the applied lime, milk, molasses and…yet…still…Mother Nature’s cupboards are empty and it seems as though the shelves and hinges are missing too.

How does the continuation of this story play out for our children? What about the future for our great, great, great, great, great, great-grandchildren? Let’s not find out.

To those of you that are engaged with bringing LIFE back into your soils, this is what I have experience and recently have been told by a PhD university professor of soil health. “The work you are doing is a least a decade AHEAD of major universities.”

You are some of the most ingenuitive, innovative, intelligent people I have ever met. The work you are doing is regenerative and it’s sustainable. I’d like to introduce you to one another.

The Compost Exchange is the event where you will meet producers of nourishment for the soil, and nourishment for animals and humans.

You will find that you are not the only one doing this work!

The art of soil building requires access to a multitude of tools. While there is no silver bullet to solve soil fertility issues, there is an essential catalyst tool for soil and crop productivity, and that is the soil food web. As with any craft, learning to build soil with the soil food web takes some patience and know how. Truth be told, building a diverse soil food web is different for every farm and every compost operation.

There are no products being sold at this event. This is about knowledge. This is about you or your neighbor creating a soil building product out of “waste”. It’s not rocket science, but it does take skill and some resources. It is for this very reason that we need one another.

If you’re looking for product, machinery, ideas, how to’s and answers, this is where you will meet your folk. To be honest, it is true that the more we learn, the less we know ~ you will walk away with new questions.

You will also walk away with some biological inoculum to add to your fungal banks.

In the world of the soil food web 1 + 1 doesn’t = 2. Sometimes it’s 5 or 7 or 20! No life on this planet, whether it be a bacterium, plant, cow, chicken or human behaves the same way in isolation as when in consortium with others. We need one another.

Participants are strongly and enthusiastically invited… mmmm nope, we demand that participants bring a gallon bag, half full, containing the best compost they have access to or have made. All Composts will be mixed together and redistributed to participants. Remember, when you increase the diversity you increase productivity!

The Compost Competition

The competition is based on active soil food web life, not N.P,K. All tests must go through the same lab for consistency. Contact Haviland Earth Regeneration to schedule your analysis. Click here for information on what the qualitative analysis is and the gathering and shipping of your Compost samples. Samples cost $60 each.
Awards will be given for:
  • Best overall diversity
  • Highest beneficial nematode count
  • Best fungal to bacterial ratio

Who? The Compost Exchange Hosts and Presenters!

Clifford Johnson

Clifford Johnson, of Johnson Enterprises, is a third generation farmer on his family farm in Paynesville, MN. He is a second generation organic farmer. Running the farm with his father, Oluf and brother Jake, all of the crop fertility is produced on site. He began learning about the soil food web in 2013. In spring of 2015 Johnson Enterprises began creating Compost and applying Compost tea to their fields. In spring of 2016 the first applications of Compost went onto the farm fields. The results have been promising. Clifford is a founding member of The Compost Exchange as well as a host and presenter.

Molly Haviland

Molly Haviland, of Haviland Earth Regeneration, L. L. C. , grew up in The Great Sand Dunes National Park. After moving to Iowa, where she gained her Bachelor of Science degree and became a Certified Soil Life Consultant, she started a soil building company. Molly has been working with Compost operations and farmers on three continents since 2011. She is a Soil Life Coach and a founding member of The Compost Exchange. Molly consults with farmers and compost operations in the development, implementation and identification of soil food web organisms.

Her goal is that by the end of this decade, humans are known for building soil and growing nutrient dense foods.

Jake Voit

Jake Voit has a successful track record as a: Change Manager, Community Facilitator, Permaculturalist, Business Developer, Systems Designer, Author, and Project Manager. He grew up on a sustainable subsistence farm, complete with organic fields and solar home. He uses Permaculture Design to build better collaboration and increased profits in organizations. His Art of Hosting facilitation abilities bring out the collective wisdom in communities and teams. Using change management, iteration, and business modeling, he shifts organizations from old to new directions for growth. Jake is the Co-Founder of New Land. A soil health solutions company providing soil biology microscopy, compost inoculants, and change strategies for shifting to a biological approach to land management.

Course Schedule

9:00-9:30: Soil Food Web Basics ~ Why do you want them? What do they do?

9:45-10:30: Live stream footage of the soil food web in soil and compost ~ What you want to see? What you can expect to see?

10:30-12:00: Building the Soil Food Web ~ How to create Compost and Compost products that contain the soil food web

12-1:00: Lunch

1-2:00: Best Compost Awards

2:00-3:00: Meet and Greet – Round table discussions

3:00-4:00: Successes, Challenges & Trade Secrets Exposed – Key knowledge from those with feet on the ground. What have been the challenges? What were the solutions? We will share up to date field experiences of what is happening on farms in the West and Midwest as they increase diversity in their Composts and on their fields.

4:00 – 500: Open Forum ~ Question and Answer


We are looking for providers of organic food for the catering company to use as an alternative to the conventional meals. In order for your offering to be accepted, you will have to present the standard documents to show that yours meets criteria for food sales.


SIlver Creek Capital Management


Would you like to sponsor this event? Contact Haviland Earth Regeneration at 303.999.5935 or email Molly Haviland using the form below:


January 14, 2017
9:00 am - 5:00 pm


Best Western Plus ~ Kelly Inn ~ Grand Ballroom!
100 4th Avenue S
Saint Cloud, MN 56301 United States
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