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ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - March 23, 2016

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

News & Resources

  • Fact Sheets for On-Farm Solar Energy Development Available Online
  • National Small Farm Conference Abstracts Due April 15
  • Public Comments Invited for April NOSB Meeting
  • NOP Highlights Spanish Resources for Information on Organic Certification
  • Indiana Farmer Veterans Can Now Market Through Homegrown by Heroes
  • First Global Assessment Shows Pollinators Under Threat

Funding Opportunities

  • Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program
  • Northeast SARE Graduate Student Grants
  • New Mexico Agricultural Development and Promotion Funds Program

Coming Events

  • Grassfed Exchange Conference
  • Reduced Tillage Organic Ag & Cover Crop Research Field Day
  • MAFO National Farmworker Conference

News & Resources

Fact Sheets for On-Farm Solar Energy Development Available Online
The Ohio State University has issued a series of fact sheets that cover key aspects of on-farm solar energy development. The series includes "An Introduction to On-Farm Solar Electric Systems," "On-Farm Solar Site Assessment," "Estimating the Size of Your Solar Electric System," "Financial Considerations of On-Farm Renewable Energy" and "On-Farm Solar Electric System Safety."
Related ATTRA Resources: Renewable Energy Opportunities on the Farm

National Small Farm Conference Abstracts Due April 15
The 2016 National Small Farm Conference, September 20-22, will include preconference short courses, plenary sessions, oral and poster presentations, success stories, exhibits, and educational tours. Four presentation types are sought: oral presentations, posters, exhibits, and success stories. Submissions are due April 15, 2016.

Public Comments Invited for April NOSB Meeting
The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) will hold a public meeting in Washington, D.C., from April 25-27, 2016. The board will address several petitions pertaining to changes to the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances. NOSB is accepting written comments on the proposals until April 14. The public is invited to provide oral comments either at the meeting or during a webinar on April 19. Interested individuals must pre-register no later than April 14 to provide oral comments.

NOP Highlights Spanish Resources for Information on Organic Certification
USDA National Organic Program (NOP) has significantly expanded its resources available to Spanish speakers who seek information about organic certification. A number of Sound and Sensible Initiative resources are available in Spanish, including a series of tipsheets developed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology. These provide summaries of rules and regulations, basic steps, key processes, and additional resources for newly certified operations.
Related ATTRA Resources: Publicaciones en Español

Indiana Farmer Veterans Can Now Market Through Homegrown by Heroes
Indiana farmer veterans can now market their products through the Indiana Grown Homegrown by Heroes initiative, a partnership between the state Department of Agriculture and Farmer Veteran Coalition. Participating farmers who are on active duty or an honorably discharged veteran and own at least 50% of an Indiana-based agribusiness are entitled to use a special logo on their packaging and signage.

First Global Assessment Shows Pollinators Under Threat
A study conducted and released by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services says a growing number of pollinator species worldwide are being driven toward extinction. Thematic Assessment of Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production highlights ways to safeguard pollinators, including promoting sustainable agriculture, which helps diversify the agricultural landscape.

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program
This program provides more than $26 million in competitive grants, divided equally between the Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) and the Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP). FMPP grants support direct producer-to-consumer marketing projects. LFPP funding supports projects that develop, improve, and expand local and regional food business intermediary supply-chain activities.
Applications are due May 12, 2016.

Northeast SARE Graduate Student Grants
This grant program supports graduate students doing research on topics specific to sustainable agriculture. Grants are capped at $15,000 and projects can run for two years. This grant is open to graduate students enrolled at an accredited college, university, or veterinary school in the Northeast region.
Applications are due May 10, 2016.

New Mexico Agricultural Development and Promotion Funds Program
New Mexico agricultural companies may apply for Agricultural Development and Promotion Funds for marketing, production demonstration, and promotional activities; market-potential surveys; specialty crop production demonstrations; facilitation of the development of marketing facilities; participation in national and international trade shows; and administrative costs.
Applications are due April 29, 2016.

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Grassfed Exchange Conference
April 27-29, 2016
Perry, Georgia
This event will include one day of pasture walk tours and two days of presentations, breakout sessions, and social events. Speakers include Fred Provenza, Will Harris, Ray Archuletta, Gabe Brown, and Doug Peterson.

Reduced Tillage Organic Ag & Cover Crop Research Field Day
April 25, 2016
Puyallup, Washington
Washington State University researchers and cooperating farmers are evaluating cover crops and equipment for use in organic reduced-tillage production. This afternoon field day will highlight winter cover crops and strategies for incorporating reduced tillage.

MAFO National Farmworker Conference
April 24-27, 2016
Austin, Texas
This year's theme is "The Farmworker Woman." Conference tracks include workforce solutions, health and wellness, education, rural asset building, and federal protections. Plenary speakers and breakout sessions are scheduled.

>> More Events

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

Visit the NCAT website for more information on our other sustainable agriculture and energy projects.

© 2016 NCAT

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New ATTRA Publication
Tipsheet: Organic Cattle, Sheep, and Goats for Dairy

Question of the Week
What herbicide residues should be avoided in commercial-scale composting?

Ask an Agriculture Expert
Submit questions to our professional staff online or by calling 1-800-346-9140

Farm Foundations: Planning for Success
Free workshop for military veterans, April 5-7, Montgomery, Alabama

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

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