Home | Newsletter Archives

NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Project

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - January 4, 2012

Weekly sustainable agriculture news and resources gleaned from the Internet by NCAT staff for the NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Project website. The Weekly Harvest Newsletter is also available online.

News & Resources

  • CSP Cutoff Date Nears
  • Nest Boxes Encourage Avian Insectivores in Vineyards
  • Israeli Research Shows Pest Control Success with Edible Oil
  • Organic Grower Survey Underway on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
  • Montana Project Training Cattle to Eat Weeds
  • Heritage Hog Project Receives SARE Funding

Funding Opportunities

  • Reclamation's Bay Delta Restoration Program: Agricultural Water Conservation and Efficiency Grants
  • New York State Health Foundation Special Projects Fund
  • Texas Specialty Crops Grants

Coming Events

  • North American Farmers' Direct Marketing Association Annual Convention
  • Healthy Farms & Rural Advantage Conference
  • New Mexico Organic Farming Conference

News & Resources

CSP Cutoff Date Nears
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition is reminding farmers and ranchers that the fiscal year 2012 ranking period cutoff for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) is January 13, 2012. All producers who have submitted their completed short conservation program application form by January 13 will then have until early March 2012 to fill out the CSP Conservation Measurement Tool. The 2012 iteration of CSP will have an enrollment cap between 9 and 10 million acres.

Nest Boxes Encourage Avian Insectivores in Vineyards
Researchers with the University of California Santa Cruz and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute recently published a study showing that introducing nest boxes in vineyards led to increases both in species richness and in population density of avian insectivores. The presence of Western Bluebirds in vineyard nest boxes strengthened ecosystem services to winegrape growers, illustrating a benefit of agroecological conservation practices.
Related ATTRA Publication: Farmscaping to Enhance Biological Control

Israeli Research Shows Pest Control Success with Edible Oil
A study conducted at the Agricultural Research Administration of the Ministry of Agriculture in Israel reveals that edible oil may be used for pest control purposes, significantly reducing the need for pesticides and cost of spraying. An emulsion of edible oil was effective in coping with diseases, insects, fungi, and agricultural pests such as mites.

Organic Grower Survey Underway on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Entomologists in the eastern United States are in the planning stages of developing a project on organic management of the brown marmorated stink bug. To gauge the extent of the BMSB problem for organic growers throughout the eastern United States, NCSU's Mountain Organic Research and Extension Unit is conducting an anonymous, online grower survey.

Montana Project Training Cattle to Eat Weeds
A Montana Farmers Union pilot program trained cattle on three Montana ranches to eat Canadian thistles by introducing new types of food over the course of five days, concluding with the target weed. Montana Farmers Union also plans to train cattle to eat other weed species and to provide information to ranchers on training cattle themselves.

Heritage Hog Project Receives SARE Funding
American Livestock Breeds Conservancy has received funding from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program to educate farmers on producing and marketing rare swine breeds. ALBC received a three-year grant to establish best management practices and husbandry skills, produce educational materials, conduct evaluations on meat quality and yields, and conduct genetic relatedness studies on eight swine breeds deemed a conservation priority.

>> More Breaking News

Back to top


Funding Opportunities

Reclamation's Bay Delta Restoration Program: Agricultural Water Conservation and Efficiency Grants
The Bureau of Reclamation, Mid-Pacific Region, invites Indian Tribes, irrigation districts, water districts, and other organizations with water or power delivery authority to cost share. Projects that save water, improve water management, create new supplies for agricultural irrigation, improve energy efficiency, and benefit endangered species may be eligible for grant awards of up to $500,000.
Applications are due by March 1, 2012.

New York State Health Foundation Special Projects Fund
The New York State Health Foundation, which has a broad mission to improve the health of New York State residents, is accepting proposals for the second round of its 2012 Special Projects Fund. Awards are one-time, non-renewable funding opportunities.
An online inquiry form must be completed by April 27, 2012.

Texas Specialty Crops Grants
Texas Department of Agriculture is seeking proposals for projects designed to raise awareness and consumption of such specialty crops as fruits, vegetables, dried fruit, tree nuts, and nursery plants. A total of $1.7 million in federal funds is available. Proposed projects should place emphasis on food safety, marketing, nutrition, plant health, or value-added projects and industry development.
The deadline for submitting proposals is February 23, 2012.

>> More Funding Opportunities

Back to top


Coming Events

North American Farmers' Direct Marketing Association Annual Convention
February 10-16, 2012
Williamsburg, Virginia

This convention includes six three-day networking bus tours traveling to farm direct-marketing and agritourism locations. The final three days include roundtable discussions, keynote speakers, workshops, concurrent sessions, and a trade show.

Healthy Farms & Rural Advantage Conference
February 10-11, 2012
Nebraska City, Nebraska

This year's agenda offers breakout sessions on grazing, local foods distribution, Farm Bill, energy, and more. The conference also features a full youth program, keynote speaker Fred Kirschenmann, and the annual All-Nebraska Foods dinner.

New Mexico Organic Farming Conference
February 17-18, 2012
Albuquerque, New Mexico

The conference offers more than 30 sessions on crops, livestock, weed and pest management, market gardening, and farm support, taught by experienced organic producers and experts in the field.

>> More Events

Back to top


Subscribe to the Weekly Harvest

Comments? Questions? Contact us

Weekly Harvest Archives
Digital versions of recent and archived Weekly Harvest newsletters are available online.

National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) logo and link to home page The NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Project was developed and is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). Visit the NCAT website for more information on our other sustainable agriculture and energy projects.

© 2011 NCAT

Back to top

Featured Publication
Small-Scale Wind Energy on the Farm

Question of the Week
What can you tell me about gooseberry and currant production?

Webinars
Our latest webinars are available for viewing in the Sustainable Agriculture Video Archive

Cosecha Mensual Spanish Newsletter
Subscribe to Cosecha Mensual (Monthly Harvest), NCAT's Spanish-language e-newsletter

Find Us on Facebook!
We feature breaking news on sustainable agriculture topics several times a week. Add us to your FaceBook friends list today!

Find us on Facebook

 



Home | Newsletter Archives