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ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - March 6, 2013

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

Heritage Pastured Poultry Workshop Accepting Registrations
The National Center for Appropriate Technology, Mission Mountain Food Enterprise Center, and Salish Kootenai College will present a one-day workshop, "Heritage Pastured Poultry Production: Opportunities and Challenges," March 14 in Great Falls, Montana. Presentations will address production, processing, and marketing topics, and a farm tour is included.

News & Resources

  • USDA Improves Crop Insurance Options for Organic Farmers
  • New Program Helps Market Agritourism
  • ARS Offers Guidance on Terminating Rye Cover Crops with Roller/Crimper
  • International Network to Coordinate Organic Farming Research
  • Food Hub Benchmarking Study to Begin
  • Report Says California Must Protect Farmland to Meet Climate Protection Goals

Funding Opportunities

  • Conservation Innovation Grants
  • North Dakota Community and School Orchard Grant
  • Driftless Area Landscape Conservation Initiative

Coming Events

  • Community Initiatives in Sustainable Agriculture Conference
  • AgrAbility National Training Workshop
  • Farm Hack Build: Horse Powered Implements

News & Resources

USDA Improves Crop Insurance Options for Organic Farmers
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) reports that USDA's Risk Management Agency will be removing the 5% premium surcharge assessed against all organic farmers seeking federal crop insurance, beginning in 2014. NSAC notes, however, that insuring individual crops may still not be the best approach for diversified organic producers, who may be better served by Adjusted Gross Revenue-Lite insurance.
Related ATTRA Publication: Crop Insurance Options for Specialty, Diversified, and Organic Farmers

New Program Helps Market Agritourism
The North Dakota State University Extension Service and University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Service have released "Marketing Agritourism Online" to help agritourism enterprises attract business. The self-directed course and resource guide offer agritourism businesses a tool to reach a targeted audience with a focused message about what they have to offer.
Related ATTRA Resource: Entertainment Farming and Agri-Tourism

ARS Offers Guidance on Terminating Rye Cover Crops with Roller/Crimper
USDA Agricultural Research Service scientists are offering guidance to farmers on using a roller/crimper to terminate rye cover crops. Researchers assessed the effects of three experimental rolling and crimping systems on soil moisture, yield, and other factors in a northern Alabama sweet corn field. The results, published in HortScience, showed that different roller types and operating speeds did not affect soil moisture and that the rollers produced higher yields in subsequent corn crops. Based on their findings, the researchers recommend that growers in Alabama plant rye by late September.

International Network to Coordinate Organic Farming Research
A new international platform to strengthen and coordinate research on organic farming and help benefits trickle down to organic farmers is being coordinated by the International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements (IFOAM). The network, dubbed the Technology and Innovation Platform of IFOAM (TIPI), will act as a forum for stakeholders, including farmers, scientists, and organizations, to debate the direction of organic research and to influence agricultural policy. It will also work to improve evaluation and implementation of organic farming.

Food Hub Benchmarking Study to Begin
The National Good Food Network (NGFN) Food Hub Collaboration, in concert with Farm Credit Council, Farm Credit East, and Morse Marketing Connections, is conducting the first-ever food hub benchmarking study to understand how food hub operations compare across the country. If you are interested in taking part in the study, email contact@foodhub.info. The study will collect data from at least 20 different food hubs to analyze information such as sales dollars, expenses, and product volume to create industry benchmarks.

Report Says California Must Protect Farmland to Meet Climate Protection Goals
A new report by the California Climate and Agriculture Network (CalCAN) says that California's farmland is at risk from traditional and new pressures. Triple Harvest: Farmland Conservation for Climate Protection, Smart Growth and Food Security describes the many essential services provided by California farmland and describes current development threats. It outlines policy recommendations for protecting agricultural lands to ensure their climate, food security, and other benefits. The report is available online.

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Conservation Innovation Grants
USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service's Conservation Innovation Grants program is intended to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies while leveraging federal investment in environmental enhancement and protection, in conjunction with agricultural production. Applications are requested from eligible governmental or non-governmental organizations or individuals for projects between one and three years in duration.
Pre-proposals are due by March 22, 2013.

North Dakota Community and School Orchard Grant
North Dakota Department of Agriculture has $20,000 available to help North Dakota communities and schools plant an orchard in 2013. Communities and schools can apply for grants of $500 to $7,000. Funds can be used for plants, trees, equipment, planting supplies, soil amendments, and irrigation and fencing supplies.
Grant applications must be received by March 15, 2013.

Driftless Area Landscape Conservation Initiative
NRCS will offer financial assistance in 2013 to agricultural producers for implementing practices that reduce erosion and improve fish and wildlife habitat in the Driftless Area of Illinois. Financial assistance will come through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).
Applications must be received by March 15, 2013.

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Community Initiatives in Sustainable Agriculture Conference
April 5-7, 2013
Appleton, Wisconsin

The conference is aimed at young people who are interested in sustainable agriculture, seeking to build confidence in sustainable agriculture as a viable and worthwhile pursuit. The conference mission is to provide the necessary community, resources, and experience to establish and support new farmers.

AgrAbility National Training Workshop
April 8-11, 2013
Minneapolis, Minnesota

AgrAbility National Training Workshop is the premier training event addressing issues of disability in agriculture. The conference includes pre-conference sessions, breakout sessions covering a wide variety of topics, and tours featuring local agricultural enterprises and rehabilitation facilities.

Farm Hack Build: Horse Powered Implements
April 13-14, 2013
Marathon, New York
The farmers at Northland Sheep Dairy are hosting an event that aims to produce a PTO forecart using an old tractor, for less than half of the price of a new purpose-built cart.

>> More Events

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Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews Archives
Digital versions of recent and archived Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews newsletters are available online. ATTRAnews is the newsletter of ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service.

National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) logo and link to home page The National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service - ATTRA - was developed and is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). The project is funded through a cooperative agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

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© 2013 NCAT

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Consejos para vender a Distribuidores de Productos Frescos

Question of the Week
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