Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - April 12, 2006
Weekly sustainable agriculture news and resources gleaned from the Internet by NCAT staff for the ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service Web site.
News & Resources
* Guide Addresses Integrated Pest Management for Potatoes
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* National Animal Identification System Plan Released
* Florida Shrimp Farm Practices Organic Aquaculture
* More Farm Family Income Coming from Off-Farm Sources
* Online Guide Covers Animal Disease Prevention for Young People
* Author Sees Local Food Revolution
* Texas Food and Fibers Research Grant Program
* New York Farmers' Markets Grant Program
* Garden Crusader Awards
* Farm to Table Workshop
* Creating Sustainable Communities
* Heartland Festival
News & Resources
Guide Addresses Integrated Pest Management for Potatoes
Growers and pest management professionals can now find the latest integrated pest management guidance for the potato tuberworm, a new, troublesome pest in the Pacific Northwest, in Integrated Pest Management for Potatoes in the Western United States, 2nd Edition. Tuberworm is just one of many pests described in the updated IPM manual by the University of California Statewide IPM Program. Growers can find information on diagnosis and treatment for more than 120 potato pests and disorders—ranging from black scurf, which causes superficial damage, to late blight, which can destroy a whole crop. To order the potato IPM manual, contact ANR Publications, 1-800-994-8849. Ask for publication 3316.
Related ATTRA Publication: Organic Alternatives for Late Blight Control in Potatoes
National Animal Identification System Plan Released
Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns has announced the release of an implementation plan that outlines timelines and benchmarks for the establishment of the National Animal Identification System (NAIS), along with a plan for the initial integration of private and state animal tracking databases with NAIS. The implementation plan adheres to an aggressive timeline for ensuring full implementation of the NAIS by 2009. The plan is not without detractors, according to a Dow Jones Newswires story posted on the Cattle Network. Opponents claim the plan would be unnecessarily costly and represent an invasion of privacy for producers. Related coverage in the Everett, Washington, Daily Herald reported on some local producers' responses to the animal identification system plan.
Florida Shrimp Farm Practices Organic Aquaculture
A Florida farm is growing shrimp 60 miles from the sea, and doing it organically, according to a Palm Beach Post article posted by the Miami Herald. OceanBoy Farms produced 1 million pounds of shrimp last year and expects to double that this year. The organic label makes the product competitive against imported shrimp that cost much less. The company is planning to introduce a heart-healthy shrimp later this year that is lower in cholesterol and higher in vitamins and beneficial Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. OceanBoy's organic shrimp has won praise from chefs and environmentalists alike.
Related ATTRA Publication: Aquaculture Enterprises: Considerations and Strategies
More Farm Family Income Coming from Off-Farm Sources
US AgNet says that two new reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service show that while farm family incomes are keeping pace with non-farm households, most of the income comes from off-farm sources. Economic Well-Being of Farm Households and Growing Farm Size and the Distribution of Farm Payments used 2003 income statistics. The first report revealed that off-farm sources provide 85 to 95 percent of income for farm households. The statistics also showed that large-scale farms, while they represent only 7 percent of farm operations, are responsible for 70 percent of total farm sales.
Online Guide Covers Animal Disease Prevention for Young People
A new Ohio State University Extension online booklet teaches young people the importance of protecting animals from disease and keeping their environment hygienic and sanitary. Prevention: A Young Person's Guide to Keeping Animals Safe and Healthy, provides a four-chapter discussion concerning basic medical principles and explains how to reduce diseases in situations where animals come into direct or indirect contact with other animals, people or equipment from outside the farm. This booklet provides a short youth-oriented course concerning those basic medical principles essential to keeping animals safe and healthy—farm isolation, traffic control, hygiene, and sanitation.
Author Sees Local Food Revolution
Brian Halweil, author of Home Grown: The Case for Local Food in a Global Market, writes in the Spring 2006 issue of YES! magazine that a local food revolution is taking place in America, as people tire of anonymous food. He cites growing numbers of farmers' markets, rising membership in Slow Food USA, more school cafeterias serving local food, and an increasing variety of artisanal food choices as evidence that people want to know where their food comes from and what's in it. Halweil points out some of the benefits of eating locally, and calls it "a sort of declaration of independence."
> More Breaking News
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Texas Food and Fibers Research Grant Program
The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) is requesting proposals for projects for the Food and Fibers Research Grant Program. The purpose of this program is to provide a vehicle for the Texas fibers and oilseeds industries to facilitate and support applied research in Texas by engaging in surveys, research, and investigations relating to the use of cotton fiber, cottonseed, oilseed products, other products of the cotton plant, wool, mohair, and other textile products. Grant proposals will be accepted from any state-supported university, state agency, or federal agricultural agency located in the State of Texas.
Proposals are due May 1, 2006.
New York Farmers' Markets Grant Program
New York has issued a Request for Proposals for the Farmers' Markets Grant Program. This grant program provides up to $50,000 in matching funds for the construction, reconstruction, improvement, expansion, or rehabilitation of farmers' markets in the State. Municipal corporations, regional market authorities, public benefit corporations, not-for-profits corporations, and agricultural cooperatives are all eligible to apply for the Farmers' Markets Grant Program. Proposals must involve physical improvement to a farmers' market.
Proposals are due May 9, 2006.
Garden Crusader Awards
The Garden Crusader Awards were created by Gardener's Supply in 2001 to honor individuals who are improving the world through gardening. There are five winners for each category - first, second, third, plus two honorable mentions and one grand prize winner, for a total of twenty six winners overall. Categories for 2006 are: Education, Feeding the Hungry, Urban Renewal, Restoration, and Beautification. The grand prize winner receives $1500 in cash plus a $1500 gift certificate from Gardener's Supply. First placers receive a $1000 gift certificate; second placers receive a $500 gift certificate; third placers receive a $250 gift certificate; honorable mentions receive a $50 gift certificate. Applications are available online or by phone.
Proposals are due June 1, 2006.
> More Funding Opportunities
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Farm to Table Workshop
May 1, 2006
Cascade Harvest Coalition's Farm to Table project presents this workshop, "Farm to Table: Connecting Local Farmers with Local Food Buyers." The workshop will include presentations by successful farmer/buyer pairings who will discuss what works and what doesn’t in terms of building these direct market relationships. Panel discussions will address how to start a farmer/buyer relationship (how to address the communication barriers) and how to work with seasonal ingredients, and a forum will be held where farmers and buyers can meet and discuss possible connections.
Creating Sustainable Communities
June 8-10, 2006
The 4th Annual BALLE Conference presents an opportunity to connect with entrepreneurs and innovators from around the globe who share a commitment to creating an economy that preserves community character and vitality, promotes economic justice, and protects ecological health and diversity. Speakers include Michael Ableman, Ben Cohen, Ronnie Cummins, and Frances Moore Lappé.
June 17-18, 2006
The Heartland Festival is an annual celebration of food, farming, and healthy living in the San Joaquin Valley. It includes farm and garden workshops, music, food, arts and crafts, demonstrations and exhibits.
> More Events
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